Diocese responds to court filing by former PCHS principal


September 21, 2020

By Todd Baucher

Says claims against chaplain “not credible”

The Wheeling-Charleston Catholic Diocese has responded to a complaint filed by the former principal at Parkersburg Catholic High School.

The legal filing claims his contract was not renewed last spring, after he raised allegations of misconduct by the school’s chaplain and its football coach. The latter’s contract was not renewed after last season.

The full text of the diocese’s statement reads:

“This civil suit arises from an employment dispute with a former principal whose contract was not renewed. The Superintendent of Schools, Mary Ann Deschaine, and the designated pastor of the school, Fr. John Rice, determined it was in the best interest of the school to have new leadership. No issues with Fr. Rice were raised in the discussions with the former principal. The recent news story was prompted by the Court’s granting the Diocese’s motion to compel arbitration of the non-renewal of the contract pursuant to the terms of the contract. The allegations alleged involving Fr. Rice were promptly investigated, reviewed by the Diocesan Sexual Abuse Review Board and determined not to be credible abuse claims.”

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