Mount St. Joe Principal Resigns Amid Alleged 'Inappropriate' Communications With Students

Barry Fitzpatrick was the principal at Mount St. Joseph High School in Baltimore.

UPDATED (1:55 p.m.)—The principal at a Baltimore City private high school has resigned amid allegations of inappropriate communications with students.

According to Mount St. Joseph's website, Barry Fitzpatrick has stepped down from his post at the West Baltimore all-boys school.

The following message, from Mount St. Joseph President George Andrews, was posted on the school's website Wednesday.

Yesterday afternoon, I accepted former Principal Barry Fitzpatrick’s resignation. Mount Saint Joseph High School requires our faculty and administrators to have only appropriate communications with our students. We recently discovered communications from Mr. Fitzpatrick that he acknowledged were inappropriate, and we accepted his resignation. As required by law, we have reported these communications to the proper authorities.

Assistant Principal David Norton, our Director of Studies, will serve as Acting Principal.

Our students mean everything to us. That was immediately clear to me the day I first arrived at the Mount in 1987. As such, we have the highest expectations for our faculty and administrators. And when these standards are not met, we have a responsibility to our boys and their families to take action.

A spokesperson for Mount St. Joseph confirmed the validity of the statement and said the school would have no further comment at this time.

Aside from serving as principal, Fitzpatrick also taught Latin at the school at the time of a Patch interview in September. He also previously served as a soccer coach at the school.

According to his profile on LinkedIn, Fitzpatrick had been principal at Mount St. Joseph since 1994, after serving as a counselor from 1986 to 1994. Prior to that, he was principal from 1980 to 1986 at Our Lady of Good Counsel in Wheaton.

Stay with Patch for updates.

Jean January 31, 2013 at 12:05 AM
here we go again with another pedophile for a teacher
Beverly Winter February 01, 2013 at 07:02 PM
Wouldn't it be nice if people had all the facts before they assumed the worst. I thought Mr. Fitzpatrick was an amazing principal. Inappropriate communication could be anything.
USMCmortician February 02, 2013 at 03:21 PM
Jean................I have to second what Beverly said. It's ignorant stupidity like yours that gets rumors started. Inappropriate communications does NOT mean something sexual. I attended Mt. St. Joseph from 94-97 ..I have also since worked closely with the faculty ever since in times of need when someone in the St. Joe family passes away (I am a local funeral director). I know Mr. Fitz very well, and he is an honorable Mount man to the core. If it turns out to be true that he did something wrong, then go ahead and criticize when you have the facts....but otherwise, put down the pitchfork and give a man with an impeccable record the benefit of the doubt. Concordia Res Parvae Crescunt--------------------
Sanchez February 02, 2013 at 03:44 PM
It's not like we don't rad daily about them and no one seems to upset. How many stories has anyone published on the vast vast numbers of molesting teachers? It is a subject that is best kept under the rug apparently. Seems kids are more at risk IN school to perverts than going to and from. Married teacher, 32, 'had sex with SEVEN of her students aged just 15 and 16 for more than a year' http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2271306/Married-teacher-sex-SEVEN-students-aged-just-15-16-year.html#axzz2JhRCWYSS 'Happily married' teacher and mother-of-two fired for 'having sex with two of her 17-year-old students' 'Happily married' teacher and mother-of-two fired for 'having sex with two of her 17-year-old students' Female teacher who 'tried to flee to Mexico with 15-year-old lover' ordered to hand in her passport http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2269155/Houston-teacher-Kathryn-Murray-accused-having-sex-teen-twice-classroom.html#axzz2JhRCWYSS Teacher whose sexual affair with one student was exposed on Twitter is sentenced to 12 months in jail over relationship with ANOTHER teen http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2257377/Teacher-Anna-Michelle-Walters-sexual-affair-student-exposed-Twitter-sentenced-12-months-jail-relationship-ANOTHER-teen.html#axzz2JhRCWYSS
Sanchez February 02, 2013 at 03:44 PM
Most of these molesters are SERIAL molesters and the issue is restricted to stories on individuals and not the widespread practice we read about daily. If this was happening in doctors offices it would definitely receive much more press and efforts to stop these serial molesters.
Sanchez February 02, 2013 at 04:53 PM
Evets, you have stated you are a teacher so I understand your defensive stance. Just as other priests seemed defensive of their fellow priests or any group defensive of their own. No secret source of these stories. They are published in all the local media where they occur. Occasionally they get a little national coverage. I do see this problem as huge but ignored. I do keep bookmarks of everyone I find. How many do you want me to post? There are hundreds and more every month. Many Evets do not see a good looking woman teacher having sex with an underage boy as all that bad. If is it a male teacher with underage females it may get attention. If a male teacher with underage male students it gets less scrutiny for some reason. Look around by googling teacher molester or other words and you too have access to all the stories.
Kris Groszer February 02, 2013 at 08:42 PM
I agree, find out what the facts are & then u can comment. I graduated from St Joe in 96. Mr Fitz was an excellent teacher, & friend give him a chance to explain.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:06 PM
" I mean data from a source that has examined the numbers and extrapolated this information into meaningful statistics. " In other words, unless it is studied it does not exist? Sort of like if NBC ABC does not cover a story it is not news worthy? COURT RECORDS of convictions and sentences are all anyone needs to see the problem Evets. Studies on hundreds of convicted teachers is something that no one apparently want to undertake. We can speculate on the reasons. If actual cases from many local sources are not enough for you to understand that there is a problem with teachers molesting children, but a study of all those cases is, I cannot help you and you will continue to defend your profession. I understand that. A case study can only be done with actual cases on the books. Not like there are not enough cases on the books.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:10 PM
Just another case not unlike the priest scandal and the cover up. Reviews of molester teacher cases drag on. By CHRISTINA HOAG, Associated Press 3:30 p.m.Jan. 25, 2013LOS ANGELES — "Months after the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing was notified of a Los Angeles Unified elementary school teacher suspected of molesting at least a dozen students and a principal who failed to report him to authorities, the agency has not taken action on the cases." http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/jan/25/calif-agency-takes-months-to-review-misconduct/ The teachers unions actually fought to keep it hard to fire molesting teachers. "Fire Teachers Who Molest Kids? LAUSD Needs a Committee to Study the Question After decades of lax treatment of teachers who molest children or commit other serious crimes, the Los Angeles School Board is finally ready to take action — well, to think about taking action. What the school board did Tuesday night was to water down a proposal to move quickly to get rid of criminal teachers and then approve forming a task force headed by Occidental College President Ted Mitchell to study possible changes in state laws and presumably union contracts." "L.A. school board votes 4-3 on motion to ease teacher firing The Los Angeles Unified school board narrowly passed a resolution Tuesday to suggest changes to state laws that would expedite the firing of teachers accused of serious crimes."
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:22 PM
"I googled "news stories about sexual abuse by doctors,"doctors: 57,900,000 results teachers: 76,200 results" Seems like a problem to me even if you discount 50% of those results. Here is one study by Charol Shakeshaft , Professor Department of Foundations, Leadership and Policy Studies. Hofstra http://www.hofstra.edu/pdf/about/administration/provost/hofhrz/hofhrz_s03_shakeshaft.pdf From this study as I noted before, mostly local stories and little interest nationally much less big studies that would bring this terrible issue to the forefront where it belongs. "Despite a number of national studies about child sexual abuse funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Justice, and the U.S. Department of Education, there are no national studies that document educator sexual abuse.1 It is curious to note that none of the federally funded studies of child sexual abuse provide data that could answer parents’ questions. In these studies, teachers are most often subsumed in the category “other” that includes any person who is not a parent or parent substitute. Since 49 percent of children are sexually abused by someone other than a parent or parent substitute, it seems sensible to know what types of “others” are sexually abusing children." No one Evets, wants to draw the wrath of the powerful teachers unions to expose this widespread problem.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:29 PM
As I stated "Most knowledge of educator sexual abuse comes from newspaper reports, hardly a reliable sample. However, newspaper coverage does remind us that educator sexual abuse is a regular occurrence in all parts of the United States. Below is a sampling of stories that were published during just one month (February 2003) and which represent only those incidents that have come to the attention of school and law enforcement officials." "My secondary analysis of the 2000 AAUW data2 indicates that 9.6 percent of all students in grades 8 to 11 report educator sexual abuse." Let us not dismiss the many cases that are not reported by the victim. Do not doubt this is a huge issue Evets. It is a moral and criminal issue few want to discuss or do anything about until it happens. This is a problem apparently best left as individual occurrences and not a national issue. This is too bad for all the children scarred for life by these teachers.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:32 PM
http://www2.ed.gov/rschstat/research/pubs/misconductreview/report.pdf A study from the US Dept of Education. This IS a serious problem Evets and it needs national attention.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:38 PM
If you are really interested Evets as an educator yourself, here are more studies for you and your fellow educators. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10538712.2010.495045?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori:rid:crossref.org&rfr_dat=cr_pub%3dpubmed& http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10538712.2010.495047?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori:rid:crossref.org&rfr_dat=cr_pub%3dpubmed Here is a liberal websites take on the issue. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2012/02/is_sexual_abuse_in_schools_very_common_.html "The best available study suggests that about 10 percent of students suffer some form of sexual abuse during their school careers. If these numbers are representative of the student population nationwide, 4.5 million students currently in grades K-12 have suffered some form of sexual abuse by an educator, and more than 3 million have experienced sexual touching or assault. This number would include both inappropriate romantic relationships between teachers and upperclassmen, and outright pedophilia. "
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:41 PM
Has Media Ignored Sex Abuse In School? http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-215_162-1933687.html "Hofstra University researcher Charol Shakeshaft looked into the problem, and the first thing that came to her mind when Education Week reported on the study were the daily headlines about the Catholic Church. "[T]hink the Catholic Church has a problem?" she said. "The physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests."" "Teacher sex cases in U. S. public schools unreported, unpunished" "Since 2007, over 2,000 separate sexual abuse cases have been filed against U. S. public school employees. This takes into account the relatively small number of cases dismissed outright, dismissed under plea agreement or changed to other charges upon conviction, but does not include the many others that get swept under the rug, covered-up, or never reported at all, according to records kept by the website BadBadTeacher.com." http://digitaljournal.com/article/290312#ixzz2JqaPPj41 Is this enough for you Evets to understand the widespread problem this is?
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:44 PM
I do apologize for my earlier statement that studies have been rarely done. The more searching show more studies. It also proves that the issue is still being swept under the proverbial rug for reasons still to be determined.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:47 PM
"Still waiting for you to cite a credible source that supports your assertion that there are "vast vast numbers of molesting teachers." Saying it so don't make it so." Still defensive for some reason. Hofstra, US Dept of Ed not credible?
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:50 PM
I will not detour about the power of the teachers unions as we all know how powerful they are. That is a side issue. This is about the widespread prevalence of teachers who molest their students. I have show you the studies and the stories. If you require more you can help yourself. Continuing to be defensive seems misplaced.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 02:58 PM
Apparently Evets you prefer to play word games, "hundreds" v. "widespread". I want this issue exposed for the widespread issue it is and how it effects these young people for the rest of their lives, not whether "hundreds" or "widespread" are similar or different. I am NOT a journalist though in my experience these days journalists are not as credible. See Journo-list. See MSNBC altering 911 tapes in a emotional murder case. See NBC cutting "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance on the air. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yq8tydBo5RI
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 03:40 PM
Evets, I take no umbrage anywhere. I am happy that at least ONE person, an educator at that, has taken any interest in this at all. I for the life of me cannot understand why no one else has chimed in given that I am sure more educators have read this story on The Patch. I only hope you read more than peruse. As for swept under the rug, when we can read and listen about this the issue in respect to its number of convictions accusations and sentencing then I will say it is no longer swept under the rug. You can bet if priests were still being arrested at the same rate as teachers you would be reading and hearing about every singe arrest. AND the continued lawsuits. Even when a teacher is arrested for multiple molestations of students it gets mostly only local coverage. Serial molesters in my world are newsworthy nationally.
Sanchez February 03, 2013 at 03:43 PM
I would like to hear from politicians and educators what they think about this issue. I have laid out a case for action.
Sanchez February 05, 2013 at 03:19 AM
What happen Evets? Did your employers see you talking about the unmentionable and you had to remove your comments? That is quite odd.
Bob February 27, 2013 at 03:53 PM
I agree...I went to MSJ. He cold have been making an inappropriate comment about a kid's mom for all we know...or giving him dating advise. Lets see what it is.


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