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School board puts off decision on Masuk head football coach’s job status, sparking anger

Masuk Head Football Coach Steve Christy, standing, with the gray vest, calms supporters during the Board of Education meeting in the school's media center Monday night.

MONROE, CT — Masuk Head Football Coach Steve Christy emerged from the Board of Education’s executive session Monday night, as board members continued to discuss his future with the team on the heels of an investigation into the culture of the football program.

Walking through the doors of the Masuk media center, Christy greeted close to 200 supporters, including many of his players.

“No matter how this goes, I want you to act with respect,” the coach told them. “I love every one of you. I can’t press enough, no matter what happens, we handle it like Masuk with class. We respect their decision, no matter what it is. No one takes anything away from us. We’re Masuk Panthers. I love this town.”

Christy also asked his supporters not to take any anger out on Superintendent of Schools Joseph Kobza, who he called a good man and a good friend.

Many football families have expressed a growing frustration over the length of the investigation, which dragged on for five months. By the time school board members came back from their executive session to vote on Christy’s job status, some of the coach’s supporters were seething over having to wait for three hours while the board deliberated behind closed doors.

Board members were met with a smattering of boos, until Christy asked people to stop.

Parents, coaches and players all stood up from their seats and faced the board members and their lawyer, Attorney Stephen Sedor, waiting for an answer …

Players lined up to hug Christy after he spoke during the public comment portion of the meeting.

But they will have to wait until next year. The board decided to table the discussion and vote to their next meeting, which is Jan. 2.

At 10:35 p.m., Board of Education Chairman David Ferris apologized to those in attendance for the late hour and turned it over to Sedor.

“Mr. Chairman and ladies and gentlemen of the board, based on all the information that Mr. Christy and Attorney Pinciaro put forth and the tenor of the discussion we had, it is my recommendation that you table the discussion …”

Some laughter could be heard in the crowd, followed by shouting.

Christy stood up from his seat in the front row and turned to face everyone. “Calm down,” he said.

After some called for Sedor to “speak up,” Ferris said, “our attorney has recommended that we table this agenda item …”

“You’re digging a hole deeper and deeper,” a woman called out.

“… so that we can continue our discussion,” Ferris said. “We have listened to Steve Christy and his attorney, seriously listened, and we need more time to debate the issue …”

“Sedor is the one that got you here!” a man shouted.

“Do I have a motion to table?” Ferris asked.

“You have a motion to fail these kids!” a man shouted.

“Seconded by Dennis …” Ferris continued.

“Failures!” a man shouted. “Useless! Useless! Every single one!”

“How much money are you gonna waste on this?” another man asked.

More people started to shout at the board and Ferris said he was going to have to clear the room. Three uniformed police officers were present to maintain order.

The crowd got louder and a young man could be heard cursing and shouting, “clear the room!”

“That’s unacceptable,” Ferris said.

Christy stood up again to calm the crowd.

“Hey! Calm down,” he said. “Let them speak! Calm down.”

The board voted to table the agenda item with Ferris, Justin Orlando, Jerry Stevens, Chrissy Martinez, Jeff Fulchino, Dennis Condon and Alan Vaglivelo voting yes and Greg Beno and Christine Cascella abstaining.

Board of Education Chairman David Ferris, left, and Superintendent of Schools Joseph Kobza listen to a resident during public comments.

Voices could be heard from the crowd: “Losers. It’s a joke. You guys suck.”

A woman yelled, “shame on you!”

“Three hours? Three hours to say nothing?!” a man called out.

Some called for board members, who are elected volunteers, to be “fired”.

Christy got up from his seat, talked to Ferris, then walked back toward the crowd, holding a hand up.

“Guy, guys, guys! Listen! Listen,” Christy said. “Thank you. We did our thing. We’ll be back. Let’s leave. Let’s let them do their thing. Hey, thank you. I love you guys. Let them do their job. Respect the process.”

“You’re embarrassing the entire f—ing town,” a man called out to board members. “The entire town!”

Many applauded the comment and started cheering.

All respectful comments with the commenter’s first and last name are welcome.

5 Comments

  1. Could we have a recall election of all the Board members? This is ridiculous. Coach has served the students and the community with grace honor and dignity for a number of years. Keep the Coach! Let’s recall the Board. Remember at election time who the Bozos on the Board are.

  2. I believe it’s time to go to the state and have the State of Connecticut have there people investigate the corrupt Masuk border members

  3. Good article. I would like to see an article that walks the readers through the specific allegations against the coach. There are a lot of write ups about the meetings…the board…the coach. We need details of specific accusations to give this context.

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