Hamilton assistant principal under police investigation, district says

Kevin Kernohan, assistant principal at Hamilton’s Brookwood Elementary, is under investigation by city police, Hamilton City Schools officials said Tuesday. STAFF FILE/2011

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Kevin Kernohan, assistant principal at Hamilton’s Brookwood Elementary, is under investigation by city police, Hamilton City Schools officials said Tuesday. STAFF FILE/2011

The principal who was going to oversee Hamilton’s summer school program is under investigation by city police, the Journal-News has exclusively learned.

The school board will vote tonight on whether to withdrawal a summer principal position offer for Kevin Kernohan, assistant principal at Brookwood Elementary.

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Hamilton school officials told the Journal-News that Kernohan — who joined Hamilton Schools in 2015 as assistant principal at Ridgeway Elementary — was placed on paid administrative leave April 30.

The reason for the leave, according to a statement by officials, was made “after Hamilton City School District was informed by Hamilton Police Department that they were conducting an investigation of his (Kernohan) being involved in possible criminal conduct.”

“As of this writing,” school officials said of Tuesday’s statement to the Journal-News, “it is our understanding that Kernohan has not been charged with any wrongdoing.”

On May 4, according to records obtained through a public documents request, Kernohan was ordered removed from paid administrative leave and placed on sick leave — accumulated during his work at the district — by order of Hamilton Schools Superintendent Larry Knapp and Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Chad Konkle.

“Your continued absences will be covered by your accumulation of paid sick leave until such time that a medical doctor provides a medical release that you are fit for duty. If paid sick leave is exhausted in the process, your salary will be unpaid,” according to the May 4 memo to Kernohan.

Kernohan’s annual salary is listed as $68,368.

School officials declined to comment further.

This media outlet checked with Hamilton Police Monday and was told there are no incident reports involving Kernohan.

Messages checking with city police officials did not elicit an immediate response Tuesday afternoon.

Kernohan, who lists himself on his Twitter account as a “proud father of 3,” was unavailable to comment.

Prior to joining Hamilton Schools, Kernohan worked for the Butler County Education Service Center from 2012-2014 as its “progress program principal.”

He is a graduate of Fairfield High School, Miami University and the University of Cincinnati.

He worked for Cincinnati Public Schools’ “project grad” program from 2003-2012.

And in 2009 he worked part-time as a Lakota West High School junior varsity basketball coach.

The Hamilton Board of Education is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. today at its Central Office at 533 Dayton St.

The Journal-News will report more as information becomes available.

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