Iowa Court of Appeals sides with fired football coach - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Iowa Court of Appeals sides with fired football coach


This week the Iowa Court of Appeals sided with former Jesup football coach, Bruce Wall, who claimed he was fired because he wasn't winning enough games.

Administrators say they terminated Wall's contract because of ineffective program leadership and failure to maintain student interest in the program. The Jesup school board could decide to appeal and take this case to the Iowa Supreme Court. They have 20 days to do so.

Bruce Wall was hired to coach the Jesup High School football team in 2000. During his time there, he won about 40 percent of his games. In 2003 he coached the team to an eight and two record and led the team to its first playoff birth in school history.

In 2005 and 2006 the team went one and eight and that's when Wall said school administrators began approaching him about improving the team.

On April 24, of 2009 the superintendent served Wall with a notice of termination of his football coaching contract because of several reasons including ineffective program leadership, failure to maintain student interest, as well as participation in the program and ineffective team discipline. 

A majority of the court of appeals disagreed with these reasons for termination.

In their ruling they wrote, "We conclude the board's decision is unsupported by a preponderance of the competent evidence in the record when the record is viewed as a whole and just cause has not been established for termination of Wall's football coaching contract. We vacate the decision of the district court and remand for a district court order affirming the decision of the arbitrator. "

Appeals Court Justice Mary Tabor dissented, saying the win-loss record can be used as a good indication of a coach's performance, but she was in the minority.

The decision to move forward and take this case to the Iowa Supreme Court could happen on May 9th during the Jesup School Board's normal meeting.

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