We’ve all heard the saying “where there’s smoke there’s fire” but sometimes there’s just smoke. Smoke and mirrors. And that is the case with the recent incident at our HS involving our boys basketball coach. Coach Johnson and his wonderful family joined our community last year. His team had a stellar season eclipsing previous seasons. Feel free to visit the MHSSA website to browse this program’s stats from both this season and previous ones. He teaches civics and his students are meeting the requirements of that class. Earlier this month he was “not recommended” for contract renewal for next year based on an evaluation process that leaves the door wide open for politics and biases to come before justice and truth. This poor evaluation had no substantiation in the FACTS of his performance. The incongruence between the evaluation and the factors behind it is appalling and would be a complete joke if the price was not so high to our school and to this man’s livelihood. And why would he not be recommended for retention?? Our school has a huge problem with teacher retention and coaching shortages. So why would we not hang on tenaciously to a loved teacher and winning coach? “There’s more to the story” was the condescending reply, darkly hinting at nefarious goings-on, when this question was broached by concerned parents. “Just trust the administrators and school board” was another one. Well inquiring minds want to know and some continued to inquire. School administrators confronted with FOIA laws attempted to hide behind “confidentiality policies” regarding this coaches records. Amusingly, it was only the administration. The coach in question gladly turned over his records. There was NOT a more to the story. Coach Johnson did not commit some dark, nefarious actions. What he did do was coach and play his team to win, not withstanding community politics. And it cost him his job. This is a man, a good man and this injustice cost him his livelihood. Are we really going to stand by and not demand our school board and school administration answer for this? I would like to add that when our school board was given the facts of Coach Johnson’s performance versus the bogus evaluation done on his performance, they did nothing. They did not stand up for right or justice. They bowed to the politics set forth by one administrator. They know the truth and did nothing. They know there was less than inadequate substantiation to back the evaluation done on Coach Johnson’s performance. They need to answer for this. And when you go to vote next week, please remember that there are now alternatives who can’t be bought, won’t factor politics and will stand for what’s right.

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