Austintown moves to fire high school teacher

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) — Austintown Local School District Superintendent Vince Colaluca said Tuesday that he and his administrative team have recommended that the district’s board fire Austintown Fitch High School social studies teacher John Dietz for misconduct involving five female high school students.

Colaluca said that there was, “definitely misconduct by Mr. Dietz,” in the situation, the details of which he did not discuss. He said a student brought the situation to the attention of a teacher, who told district administration.

Colaluca said the district did turn the case over to Austintown police and the Ohio Department of Education’s Office of Professional Conduct.

“We take any allegations very serious,” Colaluca said. ” When a kid is put in a situation they shouldn’t be in, we deal with it very seriously.”

Austintown Police Sgt. Kathy Dina relayed, through APD Capt. Bryan Kloss, that the case had been closed. No charges were filed because there was no criminal misconduct in the case, she said.

Dietz now has to decide if he will fight the recommendation for his firing by asking for a hearing. Colaluca said the district had never dealt with a case of a teacher having a relationship with a student in his five years as a superintendent.

Under Ohio law, the school system must first give notice to Dietz of their intention to fire him. He now has 10 days to decide whether to fight the dismissal and request a hearing before the full board.

Dietz has been on paid leave since the allegations first surfaced. Once Dietz is fired by Austintown, then the state board of education can revoke his teaching license.

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