Sunday, February 25, 2018
Education

Anclote High assistant principal arrested after marijuana cookies sent her to hospital

LAND O'LAKES — A Pasco County assistant principal was arrested after deputies say she ate too many pot cookies and went to the hospital with an overdose.

Donna Lynch Haff, 50, has worked for the Pasco County School District since 2008 and started as an assistant principal at Anclote High School in 2012, according to the school's online staff page.

Haff was released Monday from St. Joseph's Hospital in North Tampa after overdosing on edible marijuana in cookies made with cannabis oil, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office. Deputies went to Haff's Land O'Lakes home and arrested her for possession of a controlled substance.

"The cookie lacked plant-like material," a sheriff's report said, "but tested positive for marijuana (THC)."

Haff's 19-year-old daughter, Allison Danielle Haff, also was arrested. The daughter told deputies a cookie containing cannabis oil belonged to her, the report said. It also said both women "knowingly and intentionally" had the cookies in their possession. Deputies said they did not bake the cookies themselves.

Allison Danielle Haff was arrested Sunday while her mother was still in the hospital. Donna Haff was arrested Monday. Both made bail and were out of county jail by Tuesday afternoon, deputies said.

Donna Haff studied at the University of South Florida and Florida State University, where she graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees in education. She has been placed on administrative leave and hasn't yet been interviewed by employee relations investigators.

After that meeting, officials will decide whether to take further action, such as suspension without pay, said district spokeswoman Linda Cobbe.

Donna Haff could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday. She is the second Pasco district administrator to run into drug-related troubles this year.

In June, former Land O'Lakes High School assistant principal Shannon M. Schultz was arrested on charges of driving under the influence and cocaine possession.

Schultz remains suspended without pay, pending the outcome of the case, Cobbe said.

Times staff writer Jeffrey S. Solochek contributed to this report.

Comments
Special Olympians shine at county summer games

Special Olympians shine at county summer games

NEW PORT RICHEY — It was one of those perfect days, when sunscreen and shade are in high demand, smiles are aplenty and the camaraderie on the field trumps the thrill of victory.About 600 Special Olympians and unified athletes from west Pasco schools...
Published: 02/23/18
Pasco foundation battling childhood hunger one school at a time

Pasco foundation battling childhood hunger one school at a time

ZEPHRYHILLS — On a Thursday morning in a small warehouse off Gall Boulevard, a well-oiled machine of goodwill is cranking. At the Thomas Promise Foundation, volunteers Carlos and Robin Clothier, pack boxes of macaroni and cheese, granola bars, apple ...
Published: 02/23/18
After Parkland, another plea for rumor control: ‘This is not a joke’ (w/video)

After Parkland, another plea for rumor control: ‘This is not a joke’ (w/video)

ST. PETERSBURG — The mayor and the police chief came to Northeast High on Thursday to warn students about the dangers of circulating rumors of school safety threats on social media.While they were there, one of those unfounded rumors popped up on Fac...
Published: 02/22/18
Collards, ribs and Kool-Aid: Black History Month menu at NYU stirs controversy

Collards, ribs and Kool-Aid: Black History Month menu at NYU stirs controversy

NEW YORK — On Tuesday, a dining hall at New York University advertised a special meal in honor of Black History Month. On the menu? Barbecue ribs, cornbread, collard greens, and two beverages with racist connotations: Kool-Aid and watermelon-flavored...
Published: 02/22/18
Arming teachers? Some officials like the idea, but many educators don’t (w/video)

Arming teachers? Some officials like the idea, but many educators don’t (w/video)

With high school students from Parkland in the Capitol this week advocating for gun control, the bill that would have allowed superintendents and principals to designate trained employees who can carry concealed weapons at school didn’t get heard as ...
Published: 02/22/18
How will Douglas High students go back to class? There’s now a plan in place.

How will Douglas High students go back to class? There’s now a plan in place.

When students return to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High for the first time next Tuesday, they will be greeted by additional counselors and law enforcement."There will be a plethora of counselors and services at the school," Broward Schools Superintende...
Published: 02/21/18
School shooter may get inheritance — and be ordered to spend it on legal bills

School shooter may get inheritance — and be ordered to spend it on legal bills

Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz appears to have been in line for a sizable inheritance. He’ll never get to spend it — except perhaps on defense attorneys.The amount could be enough to compel a judge to order him to hire a private lawyer, rather ...
Published: 02/21/18
Pasco County schools, dealing with threats, warn students of consequences

Pasco County schools, dealing with threats, warn students of consequences

DADE CITY — A Pasco High School student was taken into custody Tuesday amid accusations of threatening violence against the school. The campus was not at risk, school district officials said. But they made clear they take each threat seriously, and t...
Published: 02/21/18
‘Blind Side’ star delivers message to Newsome High kids

‘Blind Side’ star delivers message to Newsome High kids

LITHIA — Students, faculty and staff recently scurried inside the Newsome High School gym for a morning assembly to hear a message about bullying from a man who kids once taunted.Newsome’s principal Carla Bruning invited actor Quinton Aaron, star of ...
Published: 02/20/18
Updated: 02/23/18
Spoto High helps students un-bottle emotions with Challenge Day

Spoto High helps students un-bottle emotions with Challenge Day

RIVERVIEW — Spoto High School English Department Head Adam Sherman can’t help but wonder if a program he introduced to Spartan students could have changed the trajectory of Nickolas Cruz’s life before he gunned down and killed 17 people on Valentine’...
Published: 02/20/18
Updated: 02/23/18