A high school principal in Missouri has resigned after she was accused of impersonating a student on Facebook in order to spy on students and their parents, according to a news report.
Louise Losos, the principal of Clayton High School in St. Louis, is suspected of having created a fake Facebook account under the alias Suzy Harriston and “friending” hundreds of students, presumably in order to monitor their communications through their Facebook postings.
The account, whose profile picture depicted a group of penguins, was set up last year. More than 300 students accepted the “friend” request from “Harriston,” many of them Clayton High School students, before a student who received one of the requests posted a note warning others to stay away from the account because he believed the principal was behind it, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
On Apr. 5, former Clayton High student and quarterback named Chase Haslett wrote on a Facebook group page, “Whoever is friends with Suzy Harriston on Facebook needs to drop them. It is the Clayton Principal.”
Shortly after he published his note, the “Harriston” account disappeared. The following day, the high school announced that Losos was taking a leave of absence. She handed in her resignation last Friday.
The school has not confirmed that Losos was behind the account or that this was the specific reason for her resignation. In a statement, school officials acknowledged only that Losos had resigned over a “fundamental dispute over the appropriate use of social media.”
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch conducted a search of public records to determine if Suzy Harriston was a real person, but came up with nothing. Clayton School District also acknowledged that no student by the name of Suzy Harriston had been enrolled at the high school in the last two years.