To the editor:
The recent decision not to retain Logan High’s beloved Lacrosse coach, Mark Stokes, as the team transitions from a club sport to an official school sport has left the players and parents hurt, angry and confused. When a school is fortunate enough to have a coach of this caliber, they should do everything within their power to hold onto him. Mark is extremely well respected and well connected within the Lacrosse community, and you will not find anyone more qualified, knowledgeable and passionate about the sport than he is. He has displayed a tireless dedication to each and every player by donating countless hours of his personal time, resources and energy back into the sport he loves so much. In addition, he and his family open up their home for weekly meals, team building and overall support to anyone who needs it. He’s been a positive role model and father figure in the lives of so many, which is crucial since many of the players aren’t fortunate enough to have that at home. With the unparalleled connection he has with the players, his expertise of the sport and his selfless dedication to the team, one would think we hit the coaching lottery. So naturally players and parents alike were devastated to hear the news (which came out of nowhere) that he was let go. We went as a group to meet with the administration yesterday to voice our concerns. Parents and players spoke from their hearts and shared emotional stories and testimonials about their positive experiences with Mark. Unfortunately, it ended up being a futile attempt to appeal to their humanity. As parents, our number one objective is what’s best for our kids. One would hope that’s the administration’s goal as well. The removal of such a highly qualified, well respected and loved coach has become one of a growing number of occurrences that has taken place at Logan High as of late. I suppose we could just chalk this up to yet another instance of the unilateral decision making Logan High’s administration has become notorious for. But how long will we continue down this road? And how many more lives will be negatively impacted by the reckless decisions of Ken Auld, Eric Markworth and Frank Schofield before action is taken?