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District to review claims before putting teachers on leave

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The superintendent of Providence schools says he will review allegations against staff before placing them on leave after union complaints that too many teachers were being taken out of the classroom based on flimsy claims.

Superintendent Christopher Maher says the district had been advised by the state to immediately forward all reports of abuse to the child welfare department instead of first conducting its own investigation.

Teachers union president Maribeth Calabro says that led to many employees being placed on leave based on false claims.

Maher says all allegations will still be forwarded, but he will make preliminary determinations about whether leave is warranted.

WPRI-TV reports that 72 employees have been placed on leave this year, but none have been charged with a crime. Most have already returned to work.

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