Coaching policy for administrators occupies panel
September 1, 2010
Some administrators also want to coach, leaving the school board to address the district’s lack of policy.
During a Warren County School District Board of School Directors Personnel/Athletics and Co-Curricular regular meeting Tuesday evening, members discussed the possibility. The agenda item appeared under the “Other” heading and did not require action.
Director of Instructional Technology/Communications Amy Stewart said the administration has had spirited conversations on the topic. She said the discussion had the goal of getting a sense of what the committee wants.
In practice, Stewart said the district asks coaches to resign when they become administrators. This presents a challenging decision for some, she said.
Board Member Jack Werner said he knows of many administrators in other districts who coach. In fact, he said one superintendent served as a track coach.
Committee Chair Thomas Knapp said he believes the superintendent or somebody the superintendent designates should decide whether to grant a request for an administrator to continue coaching.
Coordinator of District-Wide Athletics and Co-Curricular Activities James Miller said he came up with pros and cons the board may want to look at before putting together a policy. Coaches sometimes depart from schools prior to the end of the school day, he said.
For stand-alone administrators, Miller said nobody else at the school could cover for the coach. He said interaction with parents and students differs between coaches and administrators.
Recently, Miller said two coaches resigned in order to take administrative positions. He said he hoped his ideas would serve as a starting point.
Superintendent Dr. Robert Terrill said he didn’t bring up the discussion. However, he said he has served as an administrator and coach at the same time.
At his first job as superintendent, Terrill said he worked in East Hampton, Conn. The district there had about 1,400 students, he said.
Terrill said he asked the board there for permission to start and coach a wrestling program if he bought the uniforms. He said they allowed him to do so.
In individual situations, Terrill said an administrator could not give his or her all as a coach. However, he said he knew of one assistant principal in New Jersey who became the winningest wrestling coach in the state.
Board Member Paul Yourchisin, who sat on the committee in the absence of Committee Member John Grant, said he opposed having an administrator coach. While teaching, he said he coached wrestling and officiated volleyball before serving as an administrator.
“When you’re needed as an administrator, you’re really needed,” Yourchisin said. “When you’re needed as a coach, you’re really needed.”
Board Member Kimberly Angove said an administrator serves as the immediate supervisor of coaches. If someone else supervises the administrator’s coaching, she said it could cause friction.
Miller asked if the committee wanted to direct him to do anything else regarding the topic. Yourchisin said he wanted to see the pros and cons from administrators in other districts who coach.
In other business, Yourchisin said he talked with administrators about the beginning of the school year on Tuesday. He said he also read the superintendent’s report.
“I’m pleased to note after reorganizing the administration we did not crash and burn,” Yourchisin said. “We continue to educate students well and economically.”
Committee members planned to hold their next meeting at 7 p.m. Sept. 28 at Warren County Career Center.