A Jewish math teacher at a North Jersey Catholic high school says he was fired after complaining about students' anti-Semitic behavior against him including etching a swastika into the chalkboard and throwing coins at him, according to a lawsuit he recently filed.
Jacob Rabinowitz says he was told by administrators at at Saint Joseph Regional High School in Montvale would not be renewed when he came forward about the way students were treating him -- a month before the notice was required, NorthJersey.com reports.
The Archdiocese of Newark, however, said Rabinowitz did not complain about the anti-Semitism until after he got a "negative job review," the article says.
The suit says that Rabinowitz walked in on his first day of school in September 2017 to find a swastika etched into the chalkboard, and was not removed until the following April.
"St. Joseph's was so lax in its approach to the hostile work environment that it allowed a swastika to remain on Rabinowitz's blackboard after he complained about it," the complaint says.
"Any reasonable person," it adds, would understand the symbol's significance to a Jewish person, but St. Joseph's left the swastika up while it sent Mr. Rabinowitz a notice of non-renewal."
The suit -- filed Nov. 28 -- also says that school principal Michael Bruno blamed the students' anti-Semitic behavior on Rabinowitz's "inability to manage a classroom."
Rabinowitz is seeking unspecified compensatory damages for emotional distress, punitive damages and other damages and fees.
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