Supporters of a long-time coach at City Honors High School appeared at Tuesday's special Buffalo School Board meeting at City Hall. They are calling on the board to keep Deborah Matos in her job.
Supporters lined up to speak. Many carried signs to display their appreciation for the coach. Matos coaches volleyball and softball at the school, but she was placed on administrative leave following a complaint of bullying filed by a parent.
Patricia Dore is a good friend of Matos.
"I'm appalled that one or maybe two people can bring something to this level and waste taxpayer dollars at the school board when there is overwhelming support for her," stated Dore. "How did it get to this level. Long-standing, well-respected coach."
Also speaking in support of the coach, State Senator Marc Panepinto of Buffalo. Panepinto cried tears as he spoke of Matos work noting she was his daughters coach. "I just encourage the board to do the right thing and allow Deb to continue in the capacity that she has been in the last 15-years," stated Panepinto. "I apologize for being a blubbering father up here -- it's a little emotional."
Board members are expected to review a district recommendation that calls for the coach to step down. But the board could not discuss a personnel matter publicly. They promised a decision would be made soon.
Another friend, Sue Pernick appeared in support of the coach. Pernick is claiming a parent was upset because her daughter didn't make the team. "Winning coach, sectional champion, state champion, but mostly she makes women be better people," stated Pernick. "Why it got to this level this fast, I have no idea."
This is the second time Matos has been placed on administrative leave. In 2013 complaints were also filed by some parents claiming she displayed difficult behavior against players.