Members of the newly formed group Coaches and Kids Matter once again attended the last York School Committee meeting, sporting their blue and white buttons and T-shirts — a sign, said member Kent Kilgore, that the group is “not going away.”
The group formed in the wake of the dismissal of former York High School football and basketball coach Randy Small in November, to push school officials for changes in the way coaching appointments are handled and to get more clarity around the situation involving Small.
At the meeting, at least the second one the group has attended, members posed a series of questions to chair Julie Eneman, all seeking specific information about the YHS athletic program. Questions ranged from asking if any committee member in the past year had discussed the employment status of a coach to what, if any, written protocol was in place for hiring coaches.
One group of questions centered on hiring family of School Committee members — likely referring to the fact that Josh Herbein, the son of committee member Dave Herbein, was appointed to the freshman basketball coach’s position.
Eneman said she would gather input from all of the committee members and respond to the questions as soon as practicable.
“Our questions were a formality,” said Kilgore. “We know the answer to all of them and we want to see what their responses are going to be. We’re not going to be abrasive, but we want them to know we’re serious. We’re not going away.”
Kilgore has said the group is looking to strengthen the policies on hiring and firing coaches, for one thing. He said the group would like, for instance, to see non-teaching coaches have the same kind of due process protections as unionized teachers and staff.
He said the group also wants some answers as to the process used to terminate Small. That decision was made by interim Superintendent Mark McQuillan at the direction of Athletic Director Andy Wood. They have both said they are precluded from discussing the issue due to student confidentiality laws.
“We think there’s more dialogue to be had. Be transparent and give us some answers,” Kilgore said. “We think they’re evading the issue. Someone needs to hold the School Committee accountable. And that’s us.”
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