Search for AHS football coach has drama

My job as a journalist is to inform my readers as to what is happening in this parish.

I could talk about the economy or how Citizen’s Insurance is raising our rates, but I elected to talk about the search for a new football coach at Abbeville High School.

This month, applications are being taken for the head football coaching job at Abbeville High

One would think there would be no drama when it comes to selecting a head football coach at Abbeville High.

Coaches apply. Principal interviews them and then makes a recommendation of whom he or she likes to the School Board. The School Board OKs his pick and the coach is hired.

But it does not look like it is going to go that smoothly at Abbeville High School.

There have been a large number of applicants to apply for a job that has not had that much success over the last five years. It is a great group of applicants.

The applicants consist of coaches who are head coaches now, along with assistant coaches. One coach who is applying coached his team to Class A state title five years ago.

What is making this search for a head coach different than in the past is that some Vermilion Parish School Board members have decided they want a say in who AHS Principal James Segrest should hire.

One school board member is pushing for one of the applicants and talked to Segrest about this applicant.

Segrest has yet to officially interview any of the applicants, so he still has an open mind as to who is the right man for the job at Abbeville High.

I wanted to see if school board members getting involved in the hiring process of coaches was a common practice. I called retired principals, active principals and coaches. These are the best comments I heard.

“As a principal, the last thing you want someone to do is tell you who you should hire for your school,” said one principal. “When hiring coaches, everyone has an opinion, especially booster club members. You listen but that’s it.”

A retired coach said, “As far as a school board member giving their opinion, that’s wrong. I think the board members should let the professionals make the choice and not elected officials.”

I agree. School board members need to let Segrest select his man. If his man falls on his face and wins one game in three games, Segrest gets the blame. If the school board member’s choice wins only one game in three years, Segrest still gets the blame not the School Board member.

Segrest will bring three names to the School Board meeting on Jan. 28. He will have his No. 1 man and then a No. 2 and No. 3 pick.

If the School Board members vote “no” to his first choice, the No. 2 guy’s name is put up and another vote is taken. If the board rejects his name, then look for a third name to be recommended.

At the end of the month, School Board history could be made if all three of Segrest’s names are shot down by the School Board. That is not what Abbeville High School needs.

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