Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hernando assistant superintendent told he won't be retained for 2014-15

BROOKSVILLE — Hernando County School District administrator Ken Pritz is being let go after more than three decades with the district.

On June 9, superintendent Lori Romano advised Pritz, one of two assistant superintendents and a finalist to become superintendent last year, that he would not be recommended for reappointment for the 2014-15 school year.

The terse one-sentence letter is the latest development in what has been one of the biggest story lines — and the single-largest personnel shake-up — during Romano's first year in charge of the Hernando schools.

Both Romano and Pritz declined to comment.

Attorney Bruce Snow, who is representing Pritz, said the letter is further retaliation against Pritz, who filed a complaint with the district taking issue with Romano's actions.

"After 34 years of loyal and faithful service to the district, Mr. Pritz finds himself without a job unless the School Board grants him the relief he has requested," Snow said. "Pritz finds himself without a job because he had the integrity, the honesty, and the courage to challenge and report an action wherein his name was misappropriated for the purpose of sending a false, deceptive and misleading communication."

The saga began in December.

In an unexpected move, Romano relieved Pritz of his responsibilities for guiding instruction in the district and moved him to the distribution center, allowing him to keep his title and salary.

As the assistant superintendent overseeing teaching and learning, he made $101,725 this year.

In late May, Romano told Pritz that he would be the manager of warehouse and property control for the 2014-15 school year at a sizable pay cut to $61,453.20. If Pritz decided to not take the position, she wrote, she would not renew his contract.

In a letter of response June 5, Snow asked that Pritz be placed in the same position he held this past year with the same compensation. Romano's non-renewal letter followed shortly thereafter.

Pritz has contested his move from the beginning, exchanging letters through his lawyer and accusing the district of breaching his contract.

He's taken particular issue with a memo that was sent out on the day of his reassignment, which was sent from Pritz's email address, though not written by him. In part, the letter read: "I am excited about this opportunity and look forward to getting back to some of the work in which I was previously involved."

He said that's not true.

Pritz filed a complaint letter alleging that Romano violated School Board policy by sending that email. On June 10, an investigation by Tampa labor and employment lawyer Tammie L. Rattray found the email did not violate board policy.

While Rattray acknowledged it was not a best practice, she said there was no evidence that the memo was created or distributed for improper or personal gain. The inquiry was narrowly focused and didn't fully investigate Pritz' claims, Snow said. "It appears as no one has investigated the other matters," he said. "I don't think it's proper."

Danny Valentine can be reached at or (352) 848-1432. On Twitter: @HernandoTimes.

Hernando assistant superintendent told he won't be retained for 2014-15 06/16/14 [Last modified: Monday, June 16, 2014 9:28pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Neo-Nazi roommate of Tampa Palms murder suspect to plead guilty to federal explosives charges


    TAMPA — Brandon Russell, the neo-Nazi former roommate of double-murder suspect Devon Arthurs, will plead guilty next week to federal explosives charges.

  2. J.R. Sweezy shows what Bucs were missing


    By Greg Auman

    TAMPA —- Sunday's season-opening win against the Bears saw the debut of 13 Bucs, a mix of rookies and free-agent veterans.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive guard J.R. Sweezy (73), seen at center, runs through drills during training camp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, July 31, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times 

  3. Cannon Fodder podcast: Bucs-Vikings features a battle of top rookies


    Greg Auman looks at how much the Bucs have changed since the last time they played the Minnesota Vikings in 2014 in our latest Cannon Fodder podcast.

    Bucs tight end O.J. Howard (80) makes a reception as Chicago Bears free safety Eddie Jackson (39) tackles him Sunday at Raymond James Stadium. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  4. Hillsborough okays $1.25 million in Hurricane Irma-related spending with more to come


    TAMPA -- Hillsborough County commissioners approved $1.25 million in expenses related to Hurricane Irma on Wednesday with many more costs expected to come.

    The overflowing Alafia River, swollen by rains from Hurricane Irma, caused massive flooding near Lithia Pinecrest Road. On Wednesday, Hillsborough County approved $1.25 million in Irma-related spending.
  5. 'Kingsman: The Golden Circle' is exhausting, crass and too long


    Kingsman: The Golden Circle is a tarnished sequel demolishing the original's balderdash charm in a torrent of tumble-dry camera moves, CGI slosh and Elton John f-bombs.

    Taron Egerton stars in Twentieth Century Fox's "Kingsman: The Golden Circle," also starring Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Channing Tatum, Mark Strong, Elton John, Halle Berry and Jeff Bridges. (Giles Keyte/20th Century Fox)