Ex-Gateway coach: School board 'pushed me out'
The Gateway School Board on Wednesday night approved the resignation of former athletic director and football coach Terry Smith.
The action occurs nearly seven months since the board cut the position of athletic director to a part-time post and prohibited anybody serving in that position from coaching.
Smith this week accepted a $150,000 job at Temple University in Philadelphia, where he will coach wide receivers.
“The Gateway School Board pushed me out of the nest, but I found my wings,” Smith said. “I always wanted to coach Division I athletics at a major conference school. Now I have the opportunity to do that.”
Many parents have protested the athletic personnel changes made in June, which included cutting Smith's benefits in half, saying the board wanted to force Smith to quit.
“You took his benefits away from him and his family, and I'm pretty sure you're all aware of the fact that he has a daughter with special needs,” said Sasha Craig of Monroeville, who attended the school board meeting. “That was pretty disheartening and sick as far as I see it.”
Board members who supported reducing Smith's hours said the action was needed to save money because of a budget deficit. At the time, they also said an athletic director who also coaches might show favoritism for the sport he is coaching.
Smith, who is black, filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in October, alleging the board's move was racially motivated.
Despite Smith's decision to resign, one of his attorneys, Domenic A. Bellisario, said there is no plan to withdraw the complaint.
School board President Steve O'Donnell said he could not comment on the matter because of the pending EEOC action.
Smith was Gateway's head coach for 11 seasons and compiled a 101-30 record. His teams reached the playoffs every year, and Gateway was a four-time WPIAL Class AAAA runner-up.
Kyle Lawson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Defying the odds makes this Thanksgiving particularly poignant
- Group’s proposed fracking moratorium for Allegheny County parks to go on council agenda
- Millions in pollution fines went unused for decades in Allegheny County
- Rare surgery helps woman beat paralysis
- Girl, 12, rescues 4-year-old sister from burning house in Homestead
- Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank adds chief financial officer Lutovsky
- Reading Harry Potter provides clues to brain activity, CMU researchers say
- Dinners, other Thanksgiving events planned in region
- Apartment development outlined for former Schenley High School in Pittsburgh
- Newsmaker: Daniel Eichinger
- U.S. Steel to relocate corporate headquarters on former Civic Arena site