Riverhead High School principal Charles Regan at commencement in June 2018. File photo: Denise Civiletti

Former Riverhead High School principal Charles Regan has tendered his resignation to the Riverhead Central School District, effective Sept. 27.

Regan’s resignation is listed on the agenda for tomorrow night’s meeting of the board of education.

Regan, who was administratively assigned to his home on April 30, following accusations of sexual abuse by a female high school student, is currently facing disciplinary charges stemming from the student’s complaint. The student, Anastasia Stapon, has also brought a federal lawsuit against Regan and the district, as well as current and former school board members and district officials.

If the board of education accepts Regan’s resignation, disciplinary charges against the former principal will be dismissed because the hearing officer will lack jurisdiction to proceed with the charges, Riverhead Schools Superintendent Dr. Aurelia Henriquez said this afternoon.

“The District is continuing its cooperation with NYS officials to pursue the termination of Mr. Regan’s teaching and administrative licenses,” Henriquez said.

Stapon’s attorney, John Ray of Miller Place, questioned why the resignation isn’t effective immediately.

“The facts are overwhelmingly against him. He should resign immediately. There’s no reason to pay him until then,” Ray said in a phone interview today.

On home assignment, Regan continues to draw his $187, 683 salary.

Henriquez said the Sept. 27 termination date was selected because it was the earliest date at which Regan was willing to resign. She said there will be no agreement with Regan for additional salary and benefits beyond his resignation date.

On the day Ray announced he had filed a notice of claim against the district on behalf of Stapon, he called for Regan’s immediate suspension and has since then publicly criticized the school board for failing to suspend him and keeping him on the district payroll pending the resolution of the disciplinary charges. The school district’s legal counsel said the district could not suspend Regan without pay because he was not charged with a crime; Ray disagrees, stating that the State Education Law specifically allows it.

Regan , a tenured employee, was first hired by the Riverhead Central School District as an assistant principal at the high school in June 2006. Prior to that, he worked in the South Manor/Eastport-South Manor School District.

Ray has filed a notice of claim with Eastport-South Manor on behalf of a 35-year-old woman who is accusing Regan of “grooming” her from the age of 13, when she was a student at Dayton Avenue School, where Regan was a special education teacher. The claim accuses Regan of rape and sexual assault when she was a student at Eastport High School from 1999-2002.

The attorney said today he is preparing to file a federal lawsuit against the Eastport-South Manor School District and officials there as well.

Editor’s note: This story was updated after its initial publication to reflect comments from Superintendent Aurelia Henriquez.

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Denise Civiletti
Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.