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Principal fired after telling mom ‘not everyone believes the Holocaust happened’ might be rehired

Superintendent recommends awarding back pay

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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – A high school principal in Florida who was fired last year after telling a student’s mother “not everyone believes the Holocaust happened” might be rehired this week.

Superintendent Donald Fennoy has recommended that the Palm Beach County school board rehire former Spanish River High School Principal William Latson and give him $152,000 in back pay, news outlets reported. The board is set to meet Wednesday. The recommendation follows a Florida administrative judge's August ruling that Latson should not have been fired.

The school board voted 5-2 last October to fire Latson on grounds of “ethical misconduct” and “failure to carry out job responsibilities.” The official justification for his termination was failure to return messages from school district officials in the days after his comments made international news.

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Latson had initially been reassigned from the Boca Raton school to a district office job because of the outcry over his email to a mother who inquired whether the school’s students study the Holocaust. Latson, who had been at Spanish River for eight years, replied to the mother that as an educator his job was to be “politically neutral.”

“I can’t say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school district employee,” he wrote.

The mother, thinking Latson had expressed himself poorly, wrote back, saying, “The Holocaust is a factual, historical event. It is not a right or belief.”

A high school principal in Florida who was fired last year after telling a student’s mother “not eSveryone believes the Holocaust happened” might be rehired this week.e beliefs.”

The Germans under Nazi rule killed 6 million Jews during the Holocaust. The Nazis also exterminated another 5 million people during World War II including Slavs, Roma, also known as Gypsies, gays and people with disabilities.