Society

Parents File Lawsuit Alleging Daughters Were Recruited Into A Cult By Their Teachers

| by Kathryn Schroeder

A lawsuit has been filed by a family claiming their daughters were indoctrinated into a cult by their High School teachers.

The parents, referred to as John and Jane Doe in the lawsuit, allege that their two older daughters, now 22 and 19, changed drastically after spending an inappropriate amount of time with the educators at Avon High School.

The lawsuit is against the Avon school district, three teachers, a guidance counselor at Avon High School, and Wellesley College in Massachusetts. The named defendants are Tanya Mastoloni, Rebecca Kessler, Christopher Esposito, and Laura Sullivan.

The girls are said to have become “reclusive, secretive, and distant” after taking Spanish classes with teacher Tanya Mastoloni, reports the Daily Mail.

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“They lost their humor and their empathy. They began speaking in a bizarre new language. They became unable to think critically or independently. They became dependent on the schoolteachers and guidance counselors who had indoctrinated them,” the suit says.

They also allegedly had “fantasies of suicidal ideation and martyrdom” and they gathered at Wellesley College to perform religious “whirling dervish” dances.

The claim that their daughters were indoctrinated into a cult is substantiated by their youngest daughter, who reportedly broke free and then told her parents about what was happening, reports CBS Connecticut. She is a joint filer in the lawsuit with her parents.

The two older sisters have not had any contact with their family since July of 2013. They have reported their parents as being abusive so they could remain on campus at Wellesley college over the summer vacation.

The suit claims it was Mastolini, Kessler, Esposito, and Sullivan who urged the girls to cease communicating with their family, and their friends.

Avon school district issued a statement saying they are reviewing the complaint and that allegations of this kind have never been made in the past.