BERNARDS — A private school in Somerset County is investigating allegations of sexual abuse by an employee in the 1970s.

According to a letter sent to current students and families of the Pingry School in Basking Ridge and their families, alumni and trustees, the school recently became aware that several students were sexually abused by an employee named Thad Alton between 1972 and 1978. The school has hired T&M Protection Resources to conduct an independent investigation. Dale Seabury, Director of Strategic Communications and Marketing for the school, said she did not know for sure what Alton's position was. He was originally an employee of the Short Hills Country Day School which merged with the Pingry School in 1974.

Alton is now 69.

Thad Alton in 1977-78. (Courtesy Pingry School)
Thad Alton in 1977-78. (Courtesy Pingry School)

Alton worked at a university in upstate New York in 1981 and was convicted of two counts of sexual abuse of minors, and was jailed until 1995. He is listed on the New York State Sex Offender Registry and living in Manhattan.

"While these events tool place many years ago, we realize that they continue to cause pain for members of our community," Pingry wrote in the letter to its community. "It is sickening that an education, entrusted with the responsibility of protecting children, would cause such suffering. Behavior of this nature is appalling and deplorable."


The school said anyone who was abused by Alton should call headmaster Nathanial Conrad at 908-647-5555 X1232 or Laura Kirschstein of T&M Protection Resources at 212-916-8852.



More From New Jersey 101.5 FM