The Atlantic County, New Jersey Prosecutor’s Office has uncovered that the Principal of Atlantic City High School changed the reporting process of alleged child abuse cases.

We have uncovered that Atlantic City’s Chelsea Heights elementary school has also changed its child abuse reporting policy.

Instead of following New Jersey state law and Department of Education regulations … the two Atlantic City public schools mentioned above requires that all allegations of child abuse be reported first to the school Principal.

Here is what the state of New Jersey says should be done:

New Jersey Department of Education.
New Jersey Department of Education.

Former Atlantic City Board of Education President, John Devlin attempted to implement the policies and procedures regarding child abuse … yet, his efforts were thwarted by the administration, some Board of Education Members and even by the state of New Jersey.

Devlin shared the following exclusive comments with us:

The unfortunate part of all this is that we as board members with the majority vote of the board supported an independent investigation. We received resistance on every level. Not only from other board members, but from the superintendent, parts of administration and finally the state monitor Carol Morris herself. After the board approved an independent investigation, Morris had contacted me directly and advised me she would allow it; however she was getting friction from her boss in Trenton. We were merely trying to figure out how Frazier sexually assaulted children in our district and went on without the board knowing and how we could prevent such a thing in the future. We swore an oath to do our job and we received push back on every level, and when Small gained control of the board, the law firm never received cooperation to finish nor was fully paid from my understanding,” said Devlin.

Here is a copy of the Chelsea Heights child abuse policy, which clearly instruct staff to report any allegations of child abuse directly to the principal.

Staff have been prevented from reporting allegations directly to the New Jersey Department of Child Protective Services (DCP&P).

Here are the various criminal charges that have been filed against the Atlantic City High School Principal, Mayor of Atlantic City and the Superintendent of Atlantic City Public Schools by the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office:

CONSTANCE DAYS-CHAPMAN is criminally charged with:

  • second-degree Official Misconduct.
  • third-degree Hindering Apprehension of Another.
  • fourth-degree Obstruction of Justice.
  • disorderly persons Failure to Report Child Abuse.

MARTY SMALL is criminally charged with:

  • 2nd degree endangering the welfare of a child.
  • 3rd degree aggravated assault
  • 3rd degree terroristic threats
  • disorderly persons simple assault.

LA'QUETTA SMALL is criminally charged with:

  • 2nd degree endangering the welfare of a child.
  • 3 separate counts of disorderly persons simple assault.

Days-Chapman is currently suspended from her position.

No action has yet been taken against La’Quetta Small.

The Atlantic City Board of Education next meets on Tuesday, April 23, 2024.

It would seem impossible for a superintendent to remain on active status in her position, with such serious child abuse criminal charges pending.

SOURCES: John Devlin, Atlantic City Board of Education policy, New Jersey Department of Education and New Jersey state law.

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