Tuesday, December 12, 2017
Education

Newly assigned duties not appropriate for Hernando school official, lawyer says

BROOKSVILLE — The attorney for Ken Pritz has sent a second letter to the Hernando County School District asserting that superintendent Lori Romano violated the assistant superintendent's contract in December when she transferred him and gave him new responsibilities as the manager of the district's warehouse and property.

In a letter dated Jan. 21, Brooksville lawyer Bruce Snow adds another reason the move was improper: Pritz does not meet the qualifications for the new position.

The job calls for three years of experience in the areas of accounting, auditing, property records and warehouse management in a large-scale governmental operation. Pritz doesn't have that.

"Alarmingly, Mr. Pritz is compelled to communicate that he has been placed into a new position for which he has not been trained and in which he does not have experience," Snow wrote in the letter.

Romano has been advised not to comment on pending litigation.

Pritz is concerned he will be chided or professionally judged for job performance "totally unrelated to his impeccable credentials as an educator and as an administrator," Snow wrote.

Snow also says Pritz's contract prevents such a move.

The contract states that the district may, upon recommendation of the superintendent, transfer an employee, provided that the duties in the new position are similar to the person's original duties, according to Snow.

Snow contends there were two contract breaches.

First, he says the transfer was not approved by the School Board. Second, he argues that the transfer involves dissimilar duties from his position as the head of the department of teaching and learning.

"It should be noted that the newly conceptualized tasks for Mr. Pritz confirm that his new duties are not similar to the duties he was assigned pursuant to his contract," Snow wrote.

Pritz's contract was written to prevent that sort of "incongruous consequence," Snow claims.

Snow again requests that the district take steps to fix the situation and "remedy the dilemma to which Mr. Pritz has been involuntarily subjected."

Pritz was notified of Romano's decision in a letter on Dec. 16.

The brief letter stated that Pritz's efforts as head of teaching and learning had become counterproductive to the current direction of the school district.

Pritz said the letter came as a shock and that he had received no prior verbal or written reprimand.

Romano said she and Pritz had often discussed areas of concern and that his strength was not in the area of teaching and learning.

Danny Valentine can be reached at [email protected] or (352) 848-1432. Follow him on Twitter @HernandoTimes.

Comments
Merriam-Webster’s word of the year for 2017 is ‘Feminism’

Merriam-Webster’s word of the year for 2017 is ‘Feminism’

NEW YORK — This may or may not come as a surprise: Merriam-Webster’s word of the year for 2017 is "feminism." Yes, it’s been a big year or two or 100 for the word. In 2017, lookups for feminism increased 70 percent over 2016 on Mer...
Updated: 11 hours ago
‘It’s like an insane nightmare’: Parents question private company hired to drive special needs kids to school

‘It’s like an insane nightmare’: Parents question private company hired to drive special needs kids to school

RIVERVIEW — As a foster parent with two sons of her own, Kayla Storey has learned all the tricks to get her kids out of bed and off to school every morning. But this year, Storey says she’s the one waking up every school day with a knot i...
Published: 12/08/17
Updated: 12/11/17

University of Central Florida Greeks won’t hold social events, serve alcohol for 6 weeks this spring

ORLANDO — University of Central Florida fraternities and sororities won’t host social activities or any events with drinking for at least the first six weeks of the spring semester, up from the two-week ban on alcohol that has been in place in the pa...
Published: 12/08/17
Amid reports of rapes, beatings, cover-ups, grand jury to probe juvenile justice abuses

Amid reports of rapes, beatings, cover-ups, grand jury to probe juvenile justice abuses

Disturbed by stories about the rape of teens by supervisory staff, a pandemic of sometimes savage force, brutal beatdowns ordered by youth care workers and policies that permit the hiring of violent offenders, Miami-Dade’s state attorney wants to kno...
Published: 12/07/17
Henderson: Some basic facts about Hillsborough’s teacher pay imbroglio

Henderson: Some basic facts about Hillsborough’s teacher pay imbroglio

Hillsborough County’s public school teachers are horn-honking, voice-raising, sign-waving, foot-stomping mad, and I can’t blame them. They are paying for a problem they didn’t create. About one-third of the workforce was expecting to receive a $4,000...
Published: 12/07/17
In Watershed Ambassadors Program, Pasco students learn about natural Florida

In Watershed Ambassadors Program, Pasco students learn about natural Florida

SPRING HILL — On a small wooden dock at the Cross Bar Ranch, Cynthia Brinker gingerly pokes through the trappings in her fishing net, plucking out a tiny creature to examine close up. "What the heck is this?" the Weightman Middle School studen...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/07/17
Crognale named 2018 Hernando Principal of the Year

Crognale named 2018 Hernando Principal of the Year

BROOKSVILLE — For just a year and a half, Steve Crognale has been the principal at the Endeavor and Discovery Academies. But now, he’s been named the Hernando School District Principal of the Year for 2018. Endeavor serves students, most of them hig...
Published: 12/06/17
‘It’s like an insane nightmare’: Parents question private company hired to drive special needs kids to school

‘It’s like an insane nightmare’: Parents question private company hired to drive special needs kids to school

RIVERVIEW — As a foster parent with two sons of her own, Kayla Storey is skilled at calming first-day-of-school jitters. But this school year, Storey says she’s the one waking up every weekday with a knot in her stomach.It’s been there ever since th...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/11/17
Why do universities handle sexual assault cases, anyway?

Why do universities handle sexual assault cases, anyway?

News stories about campus sexual assault often get the question, "Why do schools handle these cases, anyway?"Readers often wonder how universities got tasked with handling these convoluted cases in the first place. Where, they ask, do the police come...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/11/17
Hillsborough teachers keep the heat on after $92 bonus offer

Hillsborough teachers keep the heat on after $92 bonus offer

TAMPA — The second Hillsborough County School Board meeting in less than a month took place Tuesday against a backdrop of honking car horns, cheering teachers and audience members moving through the room in shifts.Dressed in blue union-issued T-shirt...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/06/17