Former Fall River district administrator accused of inappropriate contact with student

Michael Garrow
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- The former district administrator of the Fall River School District surrendered all Dept. of Public Instruction licenses and permits over allegations that he inappropriately touched a student in another school district.

Michael Garrow was fired from the position in August and his last day on the job was Sept. 4. He surrendered his DPI licenses and permits on Jan. 8.

According to the probable cause statement from DPI, while Garrow was the school district’s administrator for the 2017-2018 school year, he also volunteered as a coach at Jefferson High School.

The document states the 47-year-old was a senior student’s coach from November through May in two separate sports. He allegedly used Snapchat with her “almost every day” and always sat next to her at team dinners.

Documents say in one instance, the team spent the night at Garrow’s Sun Prairie home in Feb. 2018. During that time, the teen asked for a blanket and Garrow sat down under the same blanket, according to the probable cause statement. She allegedly faked falling asleep so he would leave. When he didn’t leave, documents say Garrow began touching her under her shirt and put his finger under her waistband. He allegedly stopped when he heard a noise.

In another instance, documents state Garrow sent a photo of himself to the teen over Snapchat, showing his chest and abdomen area. The photo had the caption, “good night” according to the probable cause statement, and Garrow later asked the student to delete the photo.

Garrow was facing four different counts from DPI, including grooming of pupil, inappropriately touching a pupil, inappropriate communication with a pupil, and a false statement on application to DPI.
Documents say in May 2018, Garrow was removed as a coach by Jefferson Superintendent Mark Rollefson over his conduct with the student. Then in April 2019, while Garrow submitted an Administrator license application, he allegedly answered “no” to the following question:

Have you ever resigned, retired, been disciplined, been dismissed, or been non-renewed from any teaching or other school position, in part, for alleged “immoral conduct?”

After negotiations between Garrow and DPI, he continues to deny the allegations, and agreed to surrender all licenses and permits issued by DPI. Documents say “for health and financial reasons, Respondent is unable to pursue this matter further.”

According to the agreement, he cannot reinstate his licenses or permits and his status on the Wisconsin Educator License Lookup website and the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification Clearinghouse data base.

According to DPI, the Jefferson Police Department investigated the allegations and as far as DPI is aware, no charges were referred to a district attorney.