A New Jersey high school baseball coach is stepping down following a hazing incident in which a player was bitten by teammates. But he will remain an assistant coach for the school's football team.
The Florence school board approved Joseph Frappolli Jr.'s leave of absence from the baseball coaching job at Florence High School during its meeting Monday.
He will also stay on as a teacher at a district elementary school, according to the Times of Trenton.
A letter written by Frappolli was read at the board meeting. The coach said his decision to stop coaching baseball was voluntary.
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"The distractions caused by the current situation has led me to conclude it is in the best interest of the players that I should take a leave of absence," Frappolli wrote.
Four players were suspended after a March 22 hazing ritual in which a freshman member of the team was held down and bitten by others.
At the time of the suspensions, school superintendent Donna Ambrosius said Coach Frappolli knew nothing about the incident.
School district lawyer Carmen Saginario says that a similar incident earlier in March was uncovered during the school's investigation.
Saginario says it was part of a "hazing tradition" not limited to the baseball team.
"Our students, no matter what they seek to belong to or are already n, should be able to enjoy participation without harassment, intimidation, bullying or hazing," Saginario said.
School officials did not provide further details.
A new anti-hazing policy has now been implemented in the school district south of Trenton.