Legislators seek to give high school coaches stability with new law mandating multiyear contracts

David Weinberg | October 14, 2019 | Press of AC |

 

A pair of state legislators are seeking to provide public high school coaches with some stability.

Assemblyman Benjie Wimberly, D-Bergen/Passaic, and Sen. Troy Singleton, D-Burlington, introduced bills last month that would require varsity head coaches to receive three-year contracts and assistant coaches two-year contracts.

Currently, coaches are appointed by their respective Boards of Education on a year-by-year basis.

The Assembly Education Committee advanced Wimberly’s legislation last month in a 10-0 vote with one abstention. The Senate Education Committee is scheduled to conduct a hearing this fall.

“I think it’s a major protection for coaches when it comes to being unjustly fired,” Wimberly, who is also head football coach at Hackensack High School, said in a statement.

“In many cases, guys are being fired because they didn’t play a school board member’s child, or a (student-athlete) didn’t play a position they wanted to play, so you have parents go to the school board and make an issue out of it.”

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