PARKERSBURG - The Wood County Board of Education will look at revising Wood County Schools' nepotism policy to no longer include coaching positions.
The decision came Tuesday after a review of the policy, which says no employee may be in a position of direct supervision or evauation of a direct relative.
Superintendent Pat Law said the policy was adopted in 2009, but recent questions have raised concerns the policy is not being applied consistently.
Photo by Michael Erb
Wood County Board of Education members Lawrence Hasbargen, left, and Tad Wilson, center, and Wood County Schools Superintendent Pat Law, right, spoke during Tuesday’s board meeting.
"We have situations where we have coaches that are relatives and are on the same team," he said.
Law said he spoke last week with former Superintendent Bill Niday, who helped draft the policy.
"I wanted to ask him about his understanding of how this policy was to be enforced," Law said. Niday told him "the policy really only had to do with full-time employees. It really wasn't being used to deal with coaching situations."
Law told board members a quick check identified a half-dozen current situations where direct family members were serving as assistant coaches under head coaches who are related.
Law said principals have indicated more than a dozen such situations currently exist.
Law said principals indicated it would "cause some hardship on them" if they were told to enforce the nepotism policy on coaching positions, as many assistant positions have few if any willing candidates.
Several board members agreed, saying the policy should contain an exception for coaching positions.
"I don't think it's the intention of this board to exclude anyone," said board member Jim Fox.
However, the policy review will mean some assistant coaches will not be hired until later this month.
Officials said a small number of assistant coaching hires were removed from the board's consent agenda prior to Tuesday's board meeting, including coaching positions at Parkersburg South High School.
The names of those assistant coaches and sports were not made public during the meeting.
Those positions will be listed individually for approval at the board's Nov. 27 meeting. Officials said those individuals will not be allowed to coach prior to board approval.