Excerpt: Wyoming Valley West School District officials confirm that an investigation is underway into an alleged hazing incident at the high school. It involves the water polo team and allegedly took place about two and a half weeks ago in a locker room at the high school in Plymouth. The long time swim coach Frank Tribendus was suspended for two weeks as a result of the incident for allegedly not providing proper supervision inside the locker room. Superintendent of schools Chuck Supon told Eyewitness News, “I can confirm that it involved male members of the water polo team and involved horseplay that may have gone to far. It is a situation where maybe three or four kids think it was funny and one doesn’t think it was so funny and then we have an issue.” Supon added, “These are great kids and I think it may have been something that just went too far.” Supon said he could not say too much since it was a personnel mater and that the investigation was ongoing by the school resource officer who works for Plymouth Police. Coach Tribendus returned to the swim team Thursday but told this reporter he would not make any comment since it was a personnel mater referring me to Superintendent Supon. Supon added, “I can tell you no stone went unturned it was a very tedious few days as we interviewed students, adults and the coaching staff.” Supon says the coach was suspended for not providing proper supervision of the locker room. Supon said, “It was the coach who brought this to the attention of the administration in the first place. As a result of the incident the district has placed new guidelines and rules into place regarding future locker room supervision.
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--http://realalaskadaily.com and in his weekly column "Far from Randolph" in the Winchester Star-Gazette of Randolph County, Indiana.