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Wyandanch high school principal back on job after investigation, district says

Wyandanch high school Principal Paul Sibblies in a

Wyandanch high school Principal Paul Sibblies in a 2018 photo. Credit: Barry Sloan

Wyandanch Memorial High School Principal Paul Sibblies, who was reassigned and ordered off school property in October while the district reviewed an undisclosed incident, has returned to the high school, district officials said Monday.

"The internal investigation concerning Wyandanch Memorial High School Principal Mr. Paul Sibblies has concluded, and it has been determined that no further action is required," read a statement from Superintendent Gina Talbert. "Mr. Sibblies’ administrative leave of absence has ended, and he has returned to the high school effective Monday, Nov. 22."

When asked if the statement meant he was cleared of any possible wrongdoing, Talbert would not elaborate on Monday. Sibblies, in a phone interview on Monday, did not discuss the details concerning his leave, but said it was great to be back in the building.

"The kids are amazing," he said. "The staff is amazing."

Talbert said in a letter to the community on Oct. 6 that Sibblies’ reassignment was made in "an abundance of caution" to allow the district and its attorney "to review the circumstances of a recent school-related incident." No further details were provided.

In accordance with privacy rules, the district in October described its review as an "investigation." Sibblies retained his annual salary, $176,000, during his absence, according to state records.

When reached by phone in October, he denied any inappropriate action and referred questions to the superintendent.

The high school enrolls about 800 students in grades 9-12. Sibblies has been principal there since 2009. Assistant Principal Noel Rios was in charge of the school during his absence.

In March, the district announced that Sibblies had been honored at a Black History Month program sponsored by Babylon Town. At that time, a district official described him as "a remarkable role model for the scholars within the high school and the younger scholars in the middle and elementary schools."

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