Connecticut Television Stations Report on Pre-Trial Hearing in the Stone Academy Class Action Lawsuit Case10/18/2023
NBC Connecticut, WTNH News-8, and WFSB Eyewitness News reported on a virtual hearing in which Stone Academy’s former president and co-owner Joseph Bierbaum testified for the first time about the nursing school’s abrupt closing back in February. The hearing was in connection with a class action lawsuit filed by HSSK contending that the school misled its practical nursing students about the program’s credibility, failed to provide the promised education and training and caused them to suffer damages due to the interruption in their education.
The lawsuit seeks class certification for more than 1,000 students who studied nursing at Stone Academy’s three Connecticut campuses between 2018 and the school’s abrupt closure on February 14, 2023, and/or graduated from its nursing program from November 2021 to closure.
During questioning by HSSK partner David Slossberg, Mr. Bierbaum admitted, under oath, that he had a responsibility as a partial owner of the school for the students’ welfare. Despite that, he said he failed to correct violations outlined in a letter from the Connecticut Office of Higher Education based on the excuse that the letter didn’t contain specifics and the state didn’t clarify the necessary corrections. He also claimed under questioning by the Court that written representations to its students that Stone decided to close the program were not true when Stone Academy sent them, instead claiming for the first time that it closed by direction of the AG’s office. The AG’s office has denied that claim.
The hearing concluded on October 19, 2023, when Mr. Bierbaum completed his testimony. The Court also heard from defendant Mark Scheinberg. Post-trial briefing will conclude by early December.
In addition to David Slossberg, the HSSK team representing former Stone Academy students includes Kristen Zaehringer, Timothy Cowan, and Erica Nolan.
Watch the NBC Connecticut story here.
Watch the WTNH News-8 story here.
Watch the WFSB Eyewitness News story here.