MADISON, CT — A former school teacher is suing the private Grove School in Madison after she was fired for posing semi-nude for an online site in support of Donald Trump, according to a lawsuit.
Chelsy Zelasko is a registered Democrat, but in 2016 she became a vocal supporter of then-candidate Donald Trump. She posed semi-nude with her private areas covered by American flags or guns and was interviewed by betterthantheweekend.com weeks before the election. It was posted under the title “Female Trump Supporter Gets Naked to Make America Great Again.”
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Zelasko is suing the school in state Superior Court. The lawsuit was filed Monday.
The article went viral and was featured on local Pennsylvania TV news stations, which is where Zelasko is from before moving to Connecticut. She started working at the Grove School in February 2019.
Grove School Executive Director Peter Chorney called Zelasko when the postings were brought to his attention and told her it would be in her best interest to resign from the school, according to the lawsuit. Zelasko refused to resign, saying she was exercising her free-speech rights. Zelakso was terminated on April 5.
In the termination letter Chorney wrote that, “We viewed and read these postings and saw that some photos use assault weapons to cover your private parts. In one photo you are covering your breasts with American flags and sticking out your tongue.”
“We did not know about these postings when you were hired, so seeing and reading them came as quite a shock. We asked you to resign but you refused. You then sent me an email portraying this as a matter of your ‘constitutional rights,’ in which you were expressing your political views…”
Chorney went on to say in the letter that Zelasko had been a capable teacher, but she couldn’t serve as a role model for adolescents and the school couldn’t be associated with her behavior.
The Grove School is a therapeutic boarding school for students in grades 7 through 12 and a transition program for young adults.
Zelasko is seeking more than $15,000 in damages. Patch has reached out to Grove School administrators for comment.