BREAKING: District reinstates basketball coaches; staff, students respond

Wenatchee School District has announced that Ron Stone and Brandon Hobson have been reinstated as varsity boys’ and freshman boys’ basketball coaches, respectively, effective yesterday, in a press release.

Principal Bob Celebrezze said that both coaches did not coach last night and were not at practice. “They will both be present at practice this evening,” Celebrezze confirmed this afternoon.

Both coaches were placed on paid administrative leave on Jan. 15 in order for the district to investigate a personnel matter involving lewd text messages between the two coaches regarding a player’s mother, according to The Wenatchee World.

Multiple school officials could not be reached or declined to comment.

The press release states that the district completed its review and that the matter was dealt with in accordance with district policy. The Collective Bargaining Agreement between the district and co-curricular employees states that “Any criticism of an employee by any agent of the District and all disciplinary actions shall be made in private and in confidence and never in the presence of students, parents, other employees, or at public gatherings.” Information and details regarding the investigation was not available.

Dean of Students Mike Franza and math teacher Patrick Loftus said this afternoon that Hobson had resigned. However, “He has not resigned,” Celebrezze said. “He did meet with me today.”

According to Franza, he will assist Stone for the remainder of the season.

Two players were suspended from school for a few days last week, but both returned this week. The World reported that both students allegedly intercepted and circulated text messages on a coach’s phone.

“Both basketball players who were involved should have been suspended from the team completely,” history teacher Brandon Harle said.

“It only takes one kid to ruin your reputation,” history teacher Brian Lee said. “It’s chilling to think that a kid could steal my phone.”

At least one student felt that the situation was overblown. ”I believe everyone makes mistakes and that people deserve a second chance. The whole situation was very childish to say the least but losing your job over it? Nah. I think that’s lame. The situation should have been left private because it was a private conversation in the first place. What the coaches talk about in their spare time shouldn’t put their jobs at risk. It’s not any of our business. If everyone knew what people said about each other in private…. well, we’d all be out of jobs I guess,” senior ASB treasurer Isaiah Kim said.

However, senior John Dye said that if he was Stone, then he would resign because he “wouldn’t want that reputation about him at the high school.”

Sophomore Brady McDarment doesn’t think Stone should be reinstated, and added, ”The school district doesn’t care about the students (affected by the controversy).”

”It’s a fault on both sides,” sophomore Camille George said, adding that the players should not have been looking through the phone, and the coaches should not have been saying the things that they said.


George said that the coaches should have been reinstated, since the players were allowed to return to the team.