Community demands answers after basketball coach is removed from - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Community demands answers after basketball coach is removed from position

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BERNE, N.Y. – A community gathered Monday night to find out why the Berne-Knox-Westerlo basketball coach was let go from his position.

Andy Wright was fired from his position as the boys' varsity basketball coach in October 2013 without an explanation. He held the position for 10 years.

Residents in the school district have been demanding answers from the school board for the past three months and want Wright reinstated.

Michael Puzulis was one of four men who handed a letter to the school board at Monday night's meeting.

"He would like to know why, too," Puzulis said. "He has kids in this community. His family is in this community. He works at this school."

Puzulis has supported Berne-Knox-Westerlo athletics his whole life.

"My roots are here," he continued. "I was an athlete here. I grew up with people. I've lived here. I've lived here all my life."

He said he was shocked when Wright was asked to step aside.

"I was very concerned, and I took it upon myself and I went and got signatures from the community," he explained.

Nearly 400 people signed the letter to the school board.

Tom Galvin was the athletic director at the school but resigned his position after Wright's dismissal because he wasn't included in the discussion to remove Wright.

"We're looking for answers about why he wasn't reinstated," Puzulis continued. "There's no reasons. They don't give any reasons. All we hear is they want to go in a different path."

Superintendent Lonnie Palmer would not provide any details on Wright's firing.

"The board has decided that we do not comment on professional decisions and responsibilities in public," he said.

Palmer also said a decision to reinstate Wright for the next school year would be discussed by the board at a later date.

Both Wright and Galvin still work for the district as teachers.

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