Hoover schools cut coaching costs

Published 1:59 pm Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Hoover Board of Education approved a proposal Monday night to cut $120,000 in coaching supplements in the school system. Most of the 18 supplements cut at Spain Park High School and Berry Middle School was allotted money not being spent.

The athletic programs that took the largest cut were Spain Park and Berry’s track programs, losing a combined 11 supplements. However, six of those were for indoor track, a sport the AHSAA canceled before the 2008 season.

“It doesn’t really affect us all that terribly. That’s one of the reasons it was passed,” Spain Park track coach Michael Zelwak said.

Two assistant outdoor track positions and one assistant cross country position were cut, but Zelwak said that will not affect the program.

“I think everything is pretty adequately covered,” he said.

Zelwak will see a hit on his paycheck, but is not sure how much that will be, as he was serving as the assistant middle school coach at Berry.

Other positions cut were one football assistant for each the varsity, junior varsity and freshman levels, a baseball assistant coach and cheerleading coaches for basketball and wrestling.

Spain Park head baseball coach Will Smith said the baseball position does not eliminate anyone’s job at the school, but eliminates one of the program’s paid part-time assistants. He hopes the booster club will be able to pick up the difference, if the school allows.

Gaston said Superintendent Andy Craig asked each athletic director to asses their program and see where funds could be cut. Overall, 41 supplements were cut by the board, which faces the possibility of losing at least $7 million dollars of funding from the city of Hoover, if the city’s proposed budget is passed in August.

The school board’s spokesperson, Jason Gaston, said the board is still in negotiations with the city.