Elite NYC High School Principal Fired Over Sexual Misconduct Allegations – NBC New York
The principal of one of New York’s top Catholic schools has been removed from his post over allegations of sexual misconduct involving adult members of the school community, including subordinates, according to the board of trustees of the ‘school.
Father Daniel Lahart has been laid off from his post as president of the prestigious Regis High School on the Upper East Side. A letter from the chairman of the boys’ school board stated that Lahart “engaged in inappropriate and unwelcome verbal communications and physical behavior, all of a sexual nature, with adult members of the Regis community, including subordinates “. He is now permanently removed from the role.
Fordham professor of Christian spirituality, Dr Colt Anderson, said Catholic schools with the proudest histories can sometimes be the most secretive.
“All the kids who go there now know they have a special privilege to be there,” he said, adding that it was a good sign that Regis had launched a quick investigation that had had consequences.
The Jesuit religious order, which runs the school, has yet to describe Lahart’s inappropriate behavior, but the spokesperson said the order agreed with the decision to remove him. Anderson warned that religious orders can sometimes be tempted to protect their own members rather than exposing their behavior.
“And they think of redemption, and they think of forgiveness. These are deeply ingrained in how they approach these kinds of issues so they don’t want to make these things known,” Anderson said. He said the early termination shows some reforms within the church are working in the wake of the Catholic sex abuse scandal.
The board chair said the sexually inappropriate behavior with adults at school continued even after they asked him to stop. Investigators said no students were among the alleged inappropriate behavior.
Lahart could not be reached for comment. Before the misconduct allegations surfaced, it was discovered that he was posting photos of famous Regis graduates on Facebook, including Dr Anthony Fauci and Colin Jost of Saturday Night Live. It was not clear whether he would be allowed to continue the Catholic ministry in any other capacity.