Ennis resigns, says facility problems being ignored

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 26, 2006

After leading the Georgiana Panthers to a 4-6 season in his first year as head coach, Greg Ennis submitted his letter of resignation to Principal Keith York Monday.

Ennis said he has a job offer from another school, but would not disclose where it is because the school board had not yet approved his hiring.

Ennis said he felt it was in the best interests of everybody for him to move on.

&#8220I don't think either of us was real happy,” said Ennis of the situation between him and the school district. &#8220There was no indication made to me that I was doing a bad job, I just feel like the people of Georgiana deserve a little bit more than what they're getting here.”

Ennis indicated he was frustrated with what he perceived as the school system's slow response to the athletic and other facilities at Georgiana High School.

&#8220We still don't have running water or plumbing in the field house and every time you do anything to fix it, it gets stopped abruptly,” he said. &#8220There's nowhere for a child to take a shower at Georgiana High School and there's nobody trying to do anything about it any more.”

Ennis also said the bleacher and football field renovations have ceased and that he is frustrated that he's continually been told that work would resume and it hasn't.

Mike Looney, Superintendent of Education for the Butler County School system said he agrees improvements and repairs need to be made at Georgiana High, just as they do throughout the rest of the system, and he and the board are working diligently to complete them, but it will take time.

&#8220We all understand that Georgiana has significant facilities needs,” Looney said. &#8220Complications relating to the stadium renovation delayed progress, but is back on schedule. The bleacher project is expected to be complete in time for next season.

While the bleacher project will address some of the facilities issues, much remains to be done to bring Georgiana High School up to standard.

&#8220The simple truth is that some of our buildings are old, damaged, and termite infested beyond repair.”

Ennis agreed that what needs to be done at Georgiana High is a daunting project.

&#8220It's not like this place got this way overnight. I'm sure everyone who is concerned has taken a tour of the school and if they haven't that's their fault,” he said.

Looney said the district is already in the process of searching for Ennis' replacement.

&#8220The process of finding a highly qualified replacement for Coach Ennis is already underway,” he said. &#8220We are working to find a coach that is skilled on the field and one of strong character that will provide the guidance our boys need. I am confident that we will find a high caliber coach.”