Meet Ritter’s Mousketeers

Tim Ritter and his Mousketeers

Tim Ritter and his Mousketeers

TVUSD Superintendent Timothy Ritter has a serious issue. He can’t face criticism, which is problematic for any person whose livelihood is funded by taxpayers, and who is responsible for the well being of our children on 180 days of each year.

He goes to great lengths to hide from critics, but in instances where he hasn’t been able to find shelter from words that make him sad, we’ve seen his behavior turn erratic and bizarre. While Tim Ritter has a tremendous amount of shortcomings, this is his Achilles heel. And it’s unacceptable for any school district’s superintendent.

At the April 21, 2015 school board meeting, Rittergate was publicly revealed:

According to (Craig) Johns, the district became in breech of its own policies by hiring Lindsey Jean Ritter, daughter of TVUSD Superintendent, during a board meeting held on October 1, 2013.

[…]

Johns went on to say that through the investigation the group discovered Lindsey Ritter has convictions including a “plea of guilty, nolo contendere (no contest) and/or a finding of guilty by a judge or a jury.”

“Court records confirm that Lindsey Ritter was charged with penal code 487 1-3,” Johns said. “Pertaining to one of two felonies with which she was charged which is grand theft. On January 17, 2012 Miss Ritter was sentenced without going to trial for … felony reduced to a misdemeanor. Sentencing included the repayment of $18,676 worth of restitution to the San Diego court system and probation. We believe this condition was overlooked because of Mr. Ritter’s influence over this board, and more specifically, Board President Allen Pulsipher.”

This made Tim Ritter sad. So two weeks later, at the next school board meeting, something magical happened. The first six public comments were made by people who showed up to tell everyone how awesome their Superintendent is, and how dare anyone criticize him! And the usual time limit that school board president Allan Pulsipher had previously been very adamant about enforcing went out the window.

There is something interesting about these six who were spontaneously smitten with Rittermania. Tim Ritter is their boss. All six of them. And they all are connected to Great Oak High School, where Ritter used to be principal. And let’s not forget that Great Oak High School is the only TVUSD high school that was declared off-limits from the now-discredited sting, Operation Glass House, which Ritter personally authorized.

In the interest of openness and transparency, we believe you should meet Ritter’s Mousketeers.

Tim Dignan

Occupation Principal
Location Temecula Luiseño Elementary School
Previous Location Prior to becoming Principal at TLES, Dignan was Assistant Principal at Great Oak High School, the same school where Ritter is former Principal.
What Dignan Claims Mr. Ritter is the reason Dignan gave up a rewarding and satisfying career as a biology teacher to become an administrator.
Our Comment It’s true that Dignan has taught middle and high school biology. It’s also true that in 2013, the average salary for middle and high school teachers in TVUSD was $72,444, but as principal, Dignan’s 2013 salary was $109,200. We hope the pain Tim Dignan endured when he heroically left the teaching profession to follow that lifelong school administrator dream was eased by his massive salary increase. We’d like to thank Mr. Dignan for his sacrifice.
Dignan Claim #2 Dignan expressed his displeasure that Temecula’s taxpayers “have been critical of Mr. Ritter’s family which he believes crosses the line of civility and decency.”
Comment #2 Civility and Decency? We assume Dignan is referring to TVUSD’s questionable hiring of Ritter’s adult daughter, Lindsey Ritter, despite her criminal record.

  • We have no recollection of Mr. Dignan expressing outrage when our son Jesse, who is special needs, was handcuffed and arrested in his classroom, taken away, medically probed, interrogated without a lawyer, booked, and then locked up.
  • We have no recollection of Mr. Dignan expressing outrage when it was revealed that we had no idea all of this had happened until our son did not return home at the end of the school day.
  • We have no recollection of Mr. Dignan expressing outrage when a leaked press photo of Jesse being led away in handcuffs appeared in multiple television, internet and print news stories about a “drug ring”.
  • We have no recollection of Mr. Dignan expressing outrage when TVUSD still attempted to expel our son, even after a criminal judge threw out the charges.
  • We have no recollection of Mr. Dignan expressing any outrage when TVUSD wasted thousands of taxpayer dollars by continuing an attempt to force our son out of school, even after the State of California ordered that they allow him back into school.
  • And we have no recollection of Mr. Dignan ever expressing outrage, or concern for the other 21 kids (9 special education) who were entrapped and arrested in Operation Glass House, the debacle which Tim Ritter personally and irresponsibly authorized.
  • And we have no recollection of Mr. Dignan expressing outrage when many of those entrapped children spent the entire holiday season – and in some cases, longer – behind bars.

 

Chris Shore

Occupation District Math Coach
Location Great Oak High School
What Shore Claims He said the District needs instructional leaders like Mr. Ritter but as an administrator, they are dealing with issues that initiate outside of campus. He said teachers cannot teach kids to be college and career ready without leadership.
Our Comment An investigation by the California Department of Education found that the number of TVUSD’s special education students that went on to higher education, some other post-secondary education or training program, or were employed at any level was found to be 8.3%.

 

Melissa Casady Kelli Norwood Julianne Dickinson Don Skaggs
Occupation
Teacher
Occupation
P.E. Teacher
Occupation
Teacher on
Special Assignment
Occupation
Activities Director
Location  Great Oak High School
What They Claim
Casady: Ritter facilitated a meeting and both she and the parent walked out of that meeting feeling supported.
Norwood: Ritter makes decisions that are sound and has what is best for kids in mind.
Dickinson: Ritter should be commended for his integrity and value.
Skaggs: He knew Ritter was a special individual within the first five minutes of meeting him.
Fact Check
Under Ritter, TVUSD has become a source of ridicule in the national press, and a black eye on the entire city of Temecula. Ritter’s term as superintendent has been memorable only for multiple public scandals, punishments for financial improprieties, public investigation by the state of California which resulted in hundreds of corrective actions, hypocrisy, and open hostility toward those who dare criticize him. He is an enormous liability to the Temecula Valley Unified School District. A list of Ritter’s misdeeds and missteps can be viewed here. The list is long, and with yet-to-be-released information coming soon, this list will grow substantially.

 

2 comments for “Meet Ritter’s Mousketeers

  1. NC
    May 19, 2015 at 4:50 pm

    Your articles are spot on! Thanks for sharing the truth!

  2. May 22, 2015 at 5:15 pm

    Mr. Snodgrass,
    As a SPED parent in the district, I am sorry for your ordeal. I wish your family a healthy recovery.
    May I ask why you have me sporting Mouse Ears, on your site. I have not taken any issue with you or your son’s case, and your rebuttal only supported my public statements at the board meeting. (i.e. An 8% college attendance rate for special ed students only confirms that we need more instructional leadership, not more lawsuits.)
    To my knowledge, we have never been introduced. Since I’m not accustomed to being called out by people whom I do not know, I believe we should meet. How about lunch? I’m buying.
    Chris Shore

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