Update: Cheer Coach Called Out for Bullying

by omni

We’ve previously discussed the fine line between disciplining and bullying, and we recently found an upsetting story about a coach that couldn’t tell (or didn’t care) that her coaching techniques had crossed the line. It’s important to remember that bullying doesn’t always come from peers, bullying can also come from coaches and instructors, and also from parents. Here’s what happened in Dallas: On March 11, 2013, at a school board meeting, Dallas School District cheerleaders and their parents spoke out against their varsity coach, Suzanne Powell. The cheerleaders in attendance accused Powell of bullying and verbally taunting them during practices and games. One of the cheer parents that spoke out about Powell is also a cheer coach herself at the local middle school. Other parents of the high school cheerleaders worried that girls wouldn’t try out for the cheer squad next year because of its reputation. While a few cheerleaders spoke in defense of the coach, many pointed out that her criticism went to an extreme. Many parents agreed that Powell took her role as an instructor too far. Instead of giving constructive criticism, she would instead use strong directives and hurtful comments. What is perhaps even more unfortunate is the fact that several cheer parents had previously asked administrators for a private meeting concerning the bullying. However, administrators never responded and they were forced to speak about it in a public forum. Many people stereotype cheerleaders as part of the ‘in’ crowd and think that makes them immune to bullying, but this goes to show that cheerleaders experience bullying, too. Cheer is all about spirit and it’s important for a cheer coach to inspire spirit and a positive attitude. Have you ever dealt with a bullying coach? What do you think is the best way to handle such a situation? Are you a coach that has tips for effective discipline? Share your tips with our readers! Source: Times Leader

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