DENNISON -- The pastors of the Catholic churches in Tuscarawas County announced the appointment of Matt Ritzert of Dover as principal of Immaculate Conception School in Dennison and Tuscarawas Central Catholic Elementary School in Dover for the 2013-2014 school year.

The parish based schools offer classes from pre-school through grade six and are associated with parishes of Dover St. Joseph, New Philadelphia Sacred Heart, Dennison Immaculate Conception, and The Church of the Holy Trinity in Zoar.

For the past seven years, Ritzert has been assistant principal at Newcomerstown High School. He worked in a variety of roles including development director and athletic director at Tuscarawas Central Catholic High School from 1998 to 2006. Prior to beginning his career in education, Ritzert was the news and sports director at WJER Radio in Dover. Ritzert is a member of Dover St. Joseph Catholic Church where he serves on the pastoral council and is a lector and Eucharistic minister.

"I'm excited and grateful for this opportunity to lead two great schools with proud traditions," Ritzert said. "I feel like I'm going home. I grew up in Catholic education and believe strongly in the mission of Catholic schools to provide a great academic program in a faith-filled environment." Ritzert said.

Ritzert said he is looking forward to working with the staffs at Immaculate Conception, TCCES, and Tuscarawas Central Catholic Junior/Senior High School to build enrollment and promote the schools.

"The Catholic schools in Tuscarawas County have a great deal to offer in terms of an outstanding faith-based academic program. I want to work with our teachers and administrators, parish leaders, and parents to build on that tradition and spread the good news about our schools," Ritzert said.

Ritzert recently met with staff members and parents at both schools to begin the transition.

The Newcomerstown Exempted Village School District Board of Education recently accepted his resignation effective this summer as high school assistant principal.