Pittsburgh Public Schools Superintendent Anthony Hamlet Resigns | News | Pittsburgh
As announced by Pittsburgh Public School District Attorney, Ira Weiss, PPS Superintendent Anthony Hamlet, will resign from his post on October 1. in July 2016.
Hamlet has come under increased scrutiny after a report by the Pennsylvania State Ethics Commission released on August 26 found he had broken ethics rules.
Weiss announced Hamlet’s resignation at a virtual press event attended by most of the PPS board members. The board has the power to fire superintendents, however PPS board chair Sylvia Wilson has said Hamlet’s resignation was not forced action and that Hamlet “chose to do it alone “.
The board of directors is expected to meet on September 29 to appoint an interim PPS superintendent. Weiss said the PPS board will then conduct a nationwide search for a new permanent superintendent in December. Wilson said the board was waiting until December to allow newly elected board members to influence the national research process.
Weiss read a statement from the PPS board which said in part that “the board and Dr Hamlet believe it is in the best interest of the community” and that the board “remains steadfast in the belief that this outcome is unfortunate but necessary “.
This state ethics report found that Hamlet negligently received travel reimbursements and payments for work-related appearances and misclassified financial documents. According to the Ethics Commission, Hamlet used time off during the days he was away for non-district travel and postponed unused vacation and personal days for some district employees, including himself, despite his contract forbidding it.
The commission also found that a technical violation of ethics law occurred when Hamlet accepted honoraria in recognition of appearances, speeches or presentations directly related to his role as superintendent. David Berardinelli, the lawyer who represented Hamlet in the Ethics Commission investigation, noted in August that Hamlet’s contract allowed him to receive such fees, which he said is the reason the commission called Hamlet’s actions a “technical” violation.
Some parents and leaders called for Hamlet’s dismissal earlier this year. A political action committee group called Black Women for a Better Education was formed this year to support school board candidates who opposed Hamlet. And in August, after the ethics report was released, Pittsburgh City Comptroller Michael Lamb called for a change of leadership in the school district.
Helmet’s resignation comes even as many PPS board members have backed Hamlet. In August, Wilson said in a statement that a leadership change in the school district would not make sense due to existing challenges due to the pandemic.
Weiss said Hamlet was eligible for severance pay in excess of $ 399,000.