In the very competitive world of helicopter parenting, the parents of Abingdon athletes are going to have to up their game. The Dec. 31, 2018, issue of Sports Illustrated (p. 15) reports, “Someone hired a plane to fly over Briarcliff (New York) High during a baseball playoff game. It was pulling a banner that demanded the firing of two coaches.” It was about playing time. It is ALWAYS about playing time. Like the parents in Briarcliff, some Abingdon parents feel entitled to a voice regarding personnel. This town has a long established reputation of feeling entitled. Most disturbing is that the people to whom they complain (the superintendent, school administrators, School Board members) continue to validate this arrogant behavior by giving them a voice. Weak leadership ensures that there is no chain of command. These parents feel free to contact whoever about whatever or whoever.

When a player was dismissed early from practice because the coach was not pleased with his effort, the response of his parents was predictable: My son would not do that. Discipline is fine, just not for my son. For Lebanon baseball players, early dismissal from practice is seen as the motivational tool it is intended to be. In Abingdon, it requires a parent conference. And their voice is always heard. These few privileged individuals continue to dictate policy, and, given the recent evaluation one coach received, signed by both the AD and the principal, perhaps they should. It reads: “Discipline not maintained in a friendly manner” (really???) and “several incidents this season have fell short of the expectations set by AHS administration.”

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