Anthony Hamlet – Exposed to the Accustions of Misconduct (2023 Update)
Anthony Hamlet was the superintendent of the Pittsburgh Public Schools in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from July 1, 2016, to October 1, 2021. Anthony Hamlet resigned as superintendent in September 2021 after a state investigation discovered he had violated many ethics regulations. After watching him play football at the University of Miami, the Seattle Seahawks selected him in the 1992 NFL Draft.
Superintendent Anthony Hamlet resigns following an ethics inquiry.
Dr. Anthony Hamlet, superintendent of Pittsburgh Public Schools, is departing under an agreement with the school board, School Board Solicitor Ira Weiss revealed during a news conference Wednesday morning.
He handed up his resignation letter this morning.
As per the statement of Anthony Hamlet- “The board and Dr. Hamlet concur that this action is in the collective best interest of the district, its students, and its community.”
As per Weiss’s words- Anthony Hamlet claims that the board will accept Hamlet’s resignation during a special legislative meeting on September 14.
Anthony Hamlet will formally retire on October 1. At the board meeting on September 29, a temporary superintendent will be appointed.
School Board President Sylvia Wilson says Anthony Hamlet was not forced to resign but chose to do so on his own.
School Board President Words- “ “I think it is presently the best thing for students and families,” said a letter from Hamlet. “Now is the time for my tenure to come to an end and embark on a new chapter in my life.”
Last month, the Pennsylvania Ethics Commission released the findings of a two-year investigation, which found that Anthony Hamlet committed ethics violations with expenses and time off for trips. The commission found Anthony Hamlet violated the ethics code with expenses that should have been returned to district coffers.
Following the release of the results, Pennsylvania Ethics Commission Executive Director Robert Caruso stated, “If it was something that happened once, it could have been an oversight, but our investigators looked into it for over a year and we believe it constitutes a serious breach of trust.
Despite being charged with many ethics offenses and compelled to refund thousands of dollars, Anthony Hamlet accepted the commission’s conclusions after they were made public. Anthony Hamlet said that they exonerated him of any misconduct.
According to the 147-page report, the commission cited Anthony Hamlet for the following ethics violations:
- Kept more than $6,000 in honorariums paid to him on various trips.
- Received and kept thousands of dollars in travel expense money reimbursements from conference hosts already paid by the school district.
- Marked time spent out of the state and country on personal business as work days instead of properly using vacation days.
- Received thousands from the district for “unused” vacation days which he should have marked as used
According to Anthony Hamlet’s contract, he will be paid one year’s pay plus the real value of benefits, for a total of $399,687 in severance.
Beginning in December, the next School Board will organize a countrywide search for a new Superintendent.
Following the departure of Anthony Hamlet, Pittsburgh City Controller Michael Lamb issued the following statement:
As per the words by Weiss, the contract for the future superintendent “will be revised to follow the dictates of the ethics commission,” Weiss. He stated that the district has already taken steps to tighten contract control.
What was the reason for his resignation?
The State Ethics Commission issued its investigative findings last month, alleging that Hamlet submitted “negligent” travel reimbursements and was wrongfully paid for days off when he was not working for the school district. According to the order, Anthony Hamlet also breached ethics laws by accepting payment for public appearances, lectures, or presentations linked to his public position. The panel ordered him to pay the state $1,750 and the school district $6,200, as well as forfeit 14 vacation days.
Was race the actual cause of battle here?
According to community and school leaders, it is time to return the focus to the children, but they also claim that every time the district chooses a Black man for a leadership position, something or someone pushes that leader out.
The most pressing issue at this moment is that we must prioritize our children. “Anthony Hamlet did remark that all of this has been such a diversion from our concentration on our students and educating our children, and that’s why he felt it was best to step away,” said Sylvia Wilson, president of the school board. It’s incredibly rewarding to criticize and whine about someone without offering any advice or solutions.
As a result, solutions are not always what people want or expect, nor are they usually the most simple. We must take responsibility when making decisions.
The superintendent of our largest urban school system will be leaving soon. Generals are never replaced during a conflict. Anthony Hamlet’s retirement is regrettable in my perspective, said NAACP state president Kenneth Huston.
Huston stated that he believes this goes beyond state ethical violations.
“We’ve seen this playbook before,” Huston added. This is the second African American male superintendent to go through all he has, up until the point of resignation.
In an exclusive interview with the New Pittsburgh Courier on Tuesday, Sept. 28, Anthony Hamlet, Ed.D., claimed he was a man on a mission—to enhance student accomplishment and reduce gaps in minority kids’ achievement.
“We’ve done that work,” Dr. Hamlet stated. We’ve structured the district so that if that focus continues, that work will continue.” Over the last five years, we have increased in every academic field. We’ve boosted graduation rates, particularly for African American males, but also for females. We’ve also significantly reduced the number of out-of-school suspensions, citations, and arrests for African American pupils and all students. It’s all about performance for me.”
In what could be called an “exit interview,” Dr.Anthony Hamlet spoke candidly with the Courier about everything from his accomplishments as PPS superintendent during his five-year tenure, to how Pittsburgh feels about having a Black superintendent, to his final message to the 20,000 or so students who attend Pittsburgh Public Schools.
Anthony Hamlet’s plans after his resignation
Anthony Hamlet plans to stay in the Pittsburgh area for at least the next three months as Anthony Hamlet prepares for the next stage in his professional career. However, Anthony Hamlet told the Courier that Anthony Hamlet was completely committed to the pupils at PPS and that support had been put in place to ensure their success.
“Do not lose hope, PPS students,” Dr. Anthony Hamlet told the Courier. “Don’t give up on the public school system.” The system is changing and evolving and will do so in the future. We left behind a team of individuals that understand the demands, the changes, and the push that is required as a result. And they are aware that there will be opposition; yet, they are constructed and designed to push through in order to improve outcomes for our students. And, ultimately, it comes down to students.”
“Are we making student-centered decisions or adult-centered decisions?” Dr. Anthony Hamlet added. Finally, we should be in the business of doing what is best for children.”