'I am not a Holocaust denier,' William Latson says in public apology

Former Spanish River Community High School principal apologizes for 'ill-considered remarks'
William Latson apology
Posted at 5:33 PM, Oct 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-28 00:26:50-04

BOCA RATON, Fla. — The former principal at Spanish River Community High School addressed his controversial comments about the Holocaust in a recorded apology Tuesday.

William Latson, who was removed as principal in July 2019, made the public apology in a YouTube video.

Latson was fired last year after it was revealed in an email to a parent in 2018 that he couldn't say the Holocaust was a fact.

"I was wrong," Latson said. "I apologize to the Palm Beach County community, the school board, the school administration, the parents, students, teachers of Palm Beach County, the Jewish community and everyone offended or hurt by my mistake."

Latson was fired for violating the School District of Palm Beach County's Code of Ethics and performing misconduct while in office.

However, Administrative Law Judge Robert Cohen later ruled that while "Latson did commit several acts of poor judgment," his conduct "did not rise to the level of just cause for suspension or termination because the conduct was not so severe as to support that level of discipline."

After school board members voted 4-3 earlier this month to reinstate him, school board Chairman Frank Barbieri made a proposal to rescind the vote.

"I am not a Holocaust denier," Latson went on to say. "I have never been a Holocaust denier. I am sorry that my comments caused people to think that."

Latson said the district has an "exemplary" Holocaust education curriculum that was taught to all students "without exception" while he was principal.

"I am sorry that my comments caused people to question that," he said.

Latson said it's never too late to do the right thing, which is why he is apologizing for his "ill-considered remarks."

The school board listened to hours of public comment last week regarding the decision to rehire Latson. School board members are expected to decide Latson's future at next week's meeting.