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State Sen. Joe Pennacchio. (Photo by Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe).

Pennacchio asks Grewal to investigate teacher

By Nikita Biryukov, May 07 2019 1:48 pm

State Sen. Joe Pennacchio called for State Attorney General Gurbir Grewal to investigate a Jersey City teacher who was previously fired for having pornography on his school computer and texting a student late at night.

The teacher, Shawn Cier, was the driver for the Pass the Trash law Pennacchio and Assemblyman Jay Webber pushed through the legislature last year.

That law, which Gov. Phil Murphy signed into law last April, requires schools conduct a kind of background check to see if a prospective teacher’s past actions were worthy of criminal prosecution and to see if his current employers conducted the requisite background checks.

The senator also asked Grewal to comb through the Pass the Trash law for any loopholes.

“Every child has the right to a safe and nurturing learning environment. A classroom should not be a safe haven for people who could put our children at risk,” Pennacchio said. “If we need to take additional legislative action to stop the trash from being passed once and for all, then that is what we will do.”

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