The Sisters school athletic community was roiled last week when the Sisters School District sent out notice that it has “received a complaint and tort claim notice about the coaching staff for our girls high school basketball team. The allegation is that the coaching staff has verbally and emotionally abused some members of the team this past season…”

As of last week, no legal action had been filed.

The Nugget has spoken with a number of people involved in or familiar with the girls basketball program and it is safe to say that perspectives are vastly different, highly passionate, and possibly irreconcilable. Parents naturally seek to protect their children from harm. And those who have seen their children thrive in a program are ardent in their support of coaches who make that happen.

Youth sports can bring a community together — controversy in youth sports can tear a community apart. Reputations can be permanently damaged, relationships can be ruptured, and schools can find programs that are supposed to add value becoming a source of conflict and disruption.

Perhaps the current issue can be worked out among the parties involved. If it becomes a legal issue, it will go to an entirely different level. In the meantime, it is best to bear in mind that support of one does not require an attack on another, and that rushing to judgment in any direction is always harmful.

Jim Cornelius, Editor in Chief