Dr. William Hite Jr (Pictured Above)
Suit alleges age, race discrimination
by Jamie Anfenson-Comeau Staff writer
The union for Prince George’s County school principals and administrators has filed a $100 million federal class action lawsuit against the county school board and former schools superintendent William Hite.
The Association of Supervisory and Administrative School Personnel, or ASASP, filed the suit Nov. 2, alleging that school administrators were fired or demoted under Hite due to age and race discrimination.
“We have had, under Dr. Hite, almost half of our administrators and principals replaced. Hundreds of senior, experienced people have been replaced by younger, less experienced individuals,” said Doris Reed, executive director of ASASP, which represents over 800 administrators and principals, according to its website.
Reed said black male administrators were singled out during the tenure of Hite, who is also black.
“When we looked at it, older black males had no chance of promotion,” Reed said.
Hite served as superintendent of Prince George’s County Public Schools from 2009 until this summer, when he left to become superintendent of the Philadelphia School District.
The suit also alleges that during the last reduction in force, board member Donna Hathaway Beck (Dist. 9) met with certain white employees and assured them they would continue to be employed with the school system, regardless of seniority or the RIF plan.
Reed said previous attempts to resolve the issue with the school board failed.
Schools spokesman Briant Coleman said Tuesday that the school system could not comment on the lawsuit, stating, “Prince George’s County Public Schools has not been served with a complaint by ASASP.”
The suit came a little over a week after the school system finalized an agreement with the teacher’s union, providing teachers with their first pay raise in three years.
Pay raise negotiations between the ASASP and the school board are still ongoing, Reed said.
(See ealier reporting by NBC News)
Read~~> asaspunion-complaint here.