GREENBELT – The Prince George’s County Board of Education agreed to an out-of-court settlement with a former Largo High School secretary who claimed the school’s principal discriminated against her. “The parties have resolved the case and we cannot discuss it further,” said Max Pugh, a spokesman for Prince George’s County Public Schools. In August, U.S. […]
GREENBELT – The Prince George’s County Board of Education agreed to an out-of-court settlement with a former Largo High School secretary who claimed the school’s principal discriminated against her.
“The parties have resolved the case and we cannot discuss it further,” said Max Pugh, a spokesman for Prince George’s County Public Schools.
In August, U.S. District Court jury awarded a former English teacher $350,000 after he claimed discrimination by the same principal, Angelique Simpson-March.
In her complaint filed with the U.S. District Court, secretary Tracy Allison claimed Simpson-Marcus called her a “chicken head,” “hoodrat,” and “ghetto” along with other terms in the presence of faculty, staff, parents and students from 2007-2010, when she transferred to another school. Allison claimed Prince George’s County Public Schools did not respond to multiple complaints she made with the school system.
Starting in 2007, Allison complained about Simpson-Marcus to her union, the human resources department and William Barnes, Largo High School’s regional director. Darlene Ball-Rice, the principal’s secretary, also complained to Simpson-Marcus and Barnes about Simpson-Marcus’ name calling starting in fall of 2007, according to court documents.
However, according to the documents, PGCPS did not conduct an investigation or take action.
During the 2008-2009 school year, Allison began to experience severe panic attacks and attempted suicide, according to her complaints. She transferred out of Largo High School in 2010 to get away from Simpson-Marcus.
Allison filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in April 2011 indicating discrimination on race, sex and retaliation.
Simspon-Marcus remains in her position as the school’s principal, and Valerie White, president of the Largo High School Parent-Teacher-Student Association, said the organization supports her.
“She’s an excellent principal,” White said. “I don’t see her in that manner, that’s all I can say. She has brought up this school form a very long way. It’s a great academic school. Students are achieving.”
Judge Peter J. Messitte declined to comment, and Tracy Allison’s attorney, Neil Leibowitz, did not respond to requests.
A representative from Thatcher Law, which represented the Board of Education in the case, said the attorneys do not discuss cases with the media.