Morenci school board 4.16

Written by David Green.

By KIM EKINS

Morenci football fans will see a familiar face on the sidelines when the season opens in August.

Former head coach Dan Hoffman was hired Monday night to serve as head varsity coach for the 2008 season.

Audience members Phil and Pat McCaskey inquired about the board of education’s decision-making process.

“There were about 15 applicants,” board member Gary Ries said. “We narrowed it down to four candidates and we interviewed those four. A lot of applicants were from far away. We interviewed who we thought were the best candidates.”

Superintendent Kyle Griffith explained that the board was not obligated to give the names of all four candidates.

“So you’ve just made your decision and that’s it,” said Pat McCaskey.

“What’s the hurry in naming a coach?” asked Phil McCaskey. ”Maybe someone will apply for a teaching position who would make a good coach.”

“Ultimately that is what we would have liked,” Griffith answered. “But none of the candidates we had were a good fit with our teaching openings.”

“Dan Hoffman was replaced previously,” said Phil McCaskey. “Why would he be a coaching candidate?”

“Historically we have had a tough time keeping coaches around,” said Griffith. “There are still six or seven on our staff right now that are head coach material who will not take a head coaching job.”

“Parents have been so tough on coaches that some of our toughest head coaches will not return to head coaching positions.”

Griffith added that Coach Hoffman was given a list of expectations for the football program by the board of education.

“We hope to see the football program grow from the Junior Dawgs right on up through the varsity team,” Griffith said.

BOND—Griffith said the “Vote Yes” committee is doing a great job at getting the word out about the bond proposal that voters will face in May.

“We have some great community members behind the ‘Vote Yes’ committee,” he said. “That’s a big plus when business owners back the school.”

PERSONNEL—Kim Mohr was hired as assistant high school track coach for the 2007-08 season.

Heidi Drake was granted third year probation, effective during the 2008-09 school year.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

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