Sunday, December 17, 2017
Education

Pasco school officials deny posting photo of girl banned from prom

NEW PORT RICHEY — Pasco County school officials reviewed their procedures this week after the mom of a River Ridge High School junior claimed her daughter's photo was posted at the school's May 17 prom site so the girl could be recognized and denied entry.

School officials, who had the girl and her mother escorted away by police, now dispute that the girl's photo was ever distributed.

River Ridge principal Maria Swanson was concerned the girl's mother, Diana Byrnes, might show up because she had tried to get around the school's ticket purchase deadlines for her daughter, Caroline.

But the school did not distribute or show the girl's photo to anyone, Swanson told the district employee relations office.

The staff reviewed a photo of Byrnes in case she showed up, Swanson wrote. No photo was posted at the prom site, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, which assigned a school resource officer to the prom.

Byrnes said via email that her family is putting the prom drama behind them. "We are now focusing on the terrible tragedy in Oklahoma and counting our blessings," she wrote to the Times.

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