Lehigh Valley

Teacher accused of sexual assault released on bail

Teacher accused of sexual assault released on bail

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - A substitute teacher accused of sexually assaulting a 9-year-old boy in an Allentown school is free on bail.

Before this Michael James Agrippine, 47, was squeaky clean --passing FBI, state and child abuse background checks.

Thursday we learned more about the substitute teacher.

"All of the clearances were clean," said Allentown School Superintendent Dr. Russ Mayo.

Mayo says there were no red flags in the hiring of Agrippine.

Agrippine subbed at 11 schools in the district since September.

His employment application listed jobs with Roberto Clemente Charter School and Central Catholic High in Allentown and the Quakertown School District.

On his application Agrippine certifies he hasn't been convicted of a criminal offense or been fired from any job.

He also talks about the most important qualities of an outstanding teacher saying, "It has been said to teach is to touch a life forever."  "I take pride in my role as a teacher, and never forget the primary purpose of why I am here: the students."

Now district officials are meeting with teachers at the 11 schools to talk about how the alleged incident.

Last Friday, Agrippine is accused of sexually assaulting a 9-year-old boy with his finger inside a bathroom at Union Terrace Elementary School.

"We are trying to determine if there were any red flags that we should have seen somewhere," said Mayo.

The Minsi Trail Council of the Boy Scouts of America is also investigating Agrippine who had a leadership role in a local cub scout den.

Once news of the charges broke, the council emailed parents.

Council officials say they haven't been made aware of any inappropriate behavior.

As a result of this allegation, Agrippine will be listed as ineligible to volunteer and will be prevented from future involvement with scouting.

According to court documents, Agrippine allegedly confessed to police but his attorney says Agrippine is proclaiming his innocence and is now free on bond.

The investigation continues.  He is expected to be back in court next week.

Meantime, ASD is instructing all of its teachers to review good touch bad touch with students and will be posting tips for parents on how to talk to your kids about situations like this on its website.

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