Hazing News

High School Coach Fired

The top story in high school sports was an apology, admission and complaint all in one letter read by Juropa Valley (California) Patriot High School football coach Scott Pearne. Players for three years have been allowed to wear skimpy female clothing during skits done at a sports camp in imitation of the tomfoolery hazing antics of many major league baseball teams. Other allegations of improper touching were made, but no criminal charges had been filed by police. Pearne apologized, took responsibility for the hazing (some of which he said he was genuinely unaware of), and then proceeded to say he thought he should have been the one allowed to make corrective measures. The board voted nonetheless to fire Pearne as coach but allow him to retain his post as a teacher. Hazing and ‘boys will be boys’ cannot and will not be tolerated,” Sheryl Schmidt, president of the Jurupa Unified School District board of education, told the Riverside-Press. Her statement came during board comments at the end of the meeting. “We did what we had to do tonight,” she said.

By Hank Nuwer

Journalist Hank Nuwer is the Alaska author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His current book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press. He is married to Malgorzata Wroblewska Nuwer of Warsaw, Poland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Nuwer is a former columnist for the Greenville (Ohio)Early Bird and former managing editor of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Alaska.
Nuwer was named the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists columnist of the year in 2021 for his “After Darke” column in the Early Bird. He also won third place for the column in 2022 from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He and his wife Gosia, recently of Union City, Ind., have owned 20 acres in Alaska for many years. “The move is a sort-of coming home for us,” said Nuwer. As a journalist, he’s written about the Alaskan Iditarod sled-dog race and other Alaska topics. Read his musings in his blog at Real Alaska Daily-- and in his weekly column "Far from Randolph" in the Winchester Star-Gazette of Randolph County, Indiana.

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