Former Lothrop principal gave up his licenseBy Josh O’Gorman
STAFF WRITER | November 13,2013The former principal of the Pittsford elementary school has surrendered his license on grounds of “moral unfitness.”
For six years, Gregory C. West was the principal of Lothrop Elementary School, a K-8 school in Pittsford with approximately 250 students. In January, the School Board accepted his resignation. West cited medical reasons for his departure.
Last month, West surrendered his principal’s license to the Agency of Education for what the agency calls “moral unfitness to practice as an educator.”
By surrendering his license, West avoided having the state hold a hearing, in which details of his alleged misconduct would have been revealed. The investigation was prompted by a report filed with the Agency of Education.
“Anyone can file a licensing report,” said Angela Ross, a spokeswoman for the agency.
Citing confidentiality reasons, the agency would not provide details of who filed the report or what the report entailed.
John Castle, superintendent of the Rutland Northeast Supervisory Union — which includes Lothrop Elementary School — said he authored the report.
“The report came directly from me,” he said. “Mr. West resigned and we made a report shortly thereafter.”
Also citing confidentiality reasons, Castle would not discuss the exact nature of West’s alleged misconduct but wanted to let members of the community know what it did not involve.
“I want to assure you this had nothing to do with students but with adults,” said Castle, who clarified “adults” to mean staff at Lothrop.
The law allows the state to suspend an educator’s license for a number of reasons including incompetence or unprofessional conduct, which can include a conviction for grand larceny or any other crime that “involves fraudulent misrepresentation, dishonesty or deceit” or gross negligence.
According to the agency, “moral unfitness” can refer to conduct that runs contrary to school policies, on or off school grounds and before, during or after the school day.
Neither agency officials nor Castle would discuss where and when the alleged misconduct took place. Asked if he had filed reports for any other Lothrop staff related to West’s alleged misconduct, Castle referred the question to the Agency of Education.
West’s license surrender is the only license disciplinary action related to Lothrop listed with the agency going back to 2001.
After West’s resignation, John Dilts served as interim principal of the school until the hiring of the current principal, Sara Raabe.
Attempts to reach West for comment were unsuccessful.
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