Officials failed parents, athletes

Little shocks me anymore but I’m concerned by RB High School’s handling of the matter involving a volunteer wrestling coach who was under indictment by Cook County while he was coaching.

I volunteer in a feeder program as a coach and administrator and for the varsity program with video and web site management. We check backgrounds on every coach who has access to our club’s kids. We also supervise and administer the program and manage its progress.

These important functions seem to be missing in Athletic Director Otto Zeman’s office. Many parents of RB athletes are afraid to speak up for fear of retribution; I’m afraid not to.

Those who allow access to our children should be held accountable. Frankly, I am more concerned with the lack of caring than with the alleged drug dealer who was found not guilty. The Landmark did an excellent job reporting the administration’s comments, which are reflective of their culture of carelessness and quick cover up when something goes wrong.

Rather than inform the community how the kids are protected, all of RB’s emphasis has been to minimize the fellow’s role (alleged coach?) while out on $100,000 bond. They sound as if their culpability is removed if he was not paid.

Mr. Scanlon calls him a “sideline dad” … less than a volunteer? But the athletic director said “one main role was to be a mentor to the new freshman coach.” The more respected person, the head coach who resigned in March after the infectious disease outbreak, said the alleged coach “coached both freshman and varsity.”

All one has to do is review the videos/photos on the team’s Web site to see the coach’s involvement. For example, the IHSA regional tournament was at RB and hosted by tournament director Otto Zeman. He should know the roles as well as who competed while being highly contagious with skin infections.

Parents of RB athletes should know that their young adults are hard working and, in my opinion, more forthcoming, courageous and truthful than our paid administrators.

Did the fellow coach? Yes. He is highly skilled and he was good at it. However, the issue is access to kids while under felony indictment. Here the administration failed us.

Let’s encourage leadership to make some of the needed change now.

Jerry Buttimer

Take me off the mailing list

I recently received a handout in my mailbox that was titled “Brookfield First Newsletter.” Upon reading this, I quickly realized three things. 1. This is the farthest thing from “news” that you could possibly achieve; 2. Not one person took responsibility for the content of this flyer/handout/kindling; and 3. Some people apparently cannot let things go.

After reading through the slanted viewpoints, innuendo and bashing (I thought the campaign was over?) I read one of only a few sentences that rang true. It said “What is right with our village is not what the village board or manager does, but what the residents do.”

How true … and the residents voted overwhelmingly to put the present board in place. So how does this group of mystery fiction writers rationalize this fact away?

It is so fitting that there were no names attached to this propaganda – no responsibility taken, no ownership stated, just bashing and childish misstatement of fact and cherry-picking of unpopular moves that have had to be made to remain viable as a small village.

Have these people (whoever they may be) looked at an economic report lately? I would ask them myself, but have no idea who they are, as they have released this obviously biased opinion paper under the guise of “news” and not taken ownership of it.

I get enough spam in my inbox and enough junk mail in my mailbox. Save me the time and effort and take me off the list of people who receive this inaccurate and biased accounting of what’s going on in our village.

If a resident is concerned enough and has pertinent questions that need to be answered, I have always found willingness by the people in charge to discuss openly any topic that is of concern. If it is done in writing, they actually sign their names to the response. Imagine that.

Dennis Meehan