Abuse from the high school coach: What can we do?

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Question:

We believe the local high school coach has been verbally and mentally abusive to the athletes. He uses profane language, calls the athletes names such as "Fat Ass," and refers to the athletes' parents as "F*** Heads." He has also been observed striking one of the athletes on the arm during a game and then clasping his hands behind his back as he furtively looked into the bleachers. The community is outraged but the principal and the school district will not take action. What can we do?

Answer:

Nothing will speak more loudly than the knowledge that interested parents and others in the community are watching and ready to take action to right wrongs.

Every state, county, and local Board of Education has rules of conduct for its teachers and staff. Get a copy of them and give them to the coach.

Then try these actions in the following order.

  1. Go to the school principal and demand a community forum on proper conduct of teachers and coaches.
  2. Go to the Superintendent of Schools with a specific list of your complaints and recommendations for action.
  3. Appear at the School Board meeting -- again, with a very specific list of the behavior that has you worried.
  4. Inform the State Board of Education.
  5. Call the local paper.

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