Monday, May 9, 2016


The following letter from Doris Daubney will appear in the Gazette. It also appears here at her request:

As many in the community are now aware, my husband Don Daubney was informed last Wednesday, May 4 by the new Athletic Director Tom Cunninghman that if he submitted Don's name to the school board to be JV basketball coach, they would not approve the appointment. Mr. Cunningham indicated that the District Superintendent, Dr. Edward Fuhrman, told him this.  Following the end of this past season, Mr. Cunningham provided an excellent evaluation for the season.  Also discussed at this time were preliminary plans for the next season.

The reason given for this decision was school policy was broken when two 8th grade boys were allowed to play on the JV team. These boys passed both the required medical exam given by the school doctor as well as the physical fitness exam by school personnel.  Don was told by head coach Bill Thom that these boys could be on the team providing no sophomores were cut in order to accommodate them, which none were. This was done with the knowledge of not only Coach Thom, but Mr. Cunningham as well.  Don's records indicate that in the last 10 years eight 8th grade boys have played on JV basketball, including coach Thom's son Ian. This practice is not exclusive to boys basketball, but occurs in other sports as well. This season an 8th grade girl played varsity basketball.

Don was hired in 1965 by the school district as Director of Athletics, High School Physical Education teacher and varsity basketball coach.  As Athletic Director, Don was responsible for the introduction of varsity lacrosse and soccer. He retired from teaching in 1993, but has remained coaching basketball on both the freshman and JV levels. The last 17 years Don has been appointed JV basketball coach, always with positive reviews by the various Athletic Directors. He worked closely with Bill Thom taking students to various summer camps at Providence College, Sienna College and most recently Albright. This was strictly a voluntary move which meant giving up part of summer vacation.

Don shows respect to his players and teaches them to be respectful to their team members as well as members of the opposing team. He instills responsibility in them to be good school citizens. At the beginning of the season he tells them to come to him to talk over any problem they may be having on the team. One boy chose to do that half way into the season. He felt he should be a starter, was not playing enough and was leaving the team. No other player spoke to Don about any dissatisfaction.

The question is how was this decision made and by whom and will other coaches suffer the same fate because of an obvious error somewhere in the upper chain of administration.

Sincerely, Doris Daubney


  1. This smells really bad. Shame on the school!

  2. Thank you for a clear, thorough explanation of the events. The only meaningful question remaining seems to be, "Why was Coach Daubney targeted?"