AISD board accepts resignation of AHS volleyball coach Kori Clements

Kori Clements
Before an overflow audience Tuesday night, the Amarillo ISD school board voted to accept the resignation of Amarillo High volleyball coach Kori Clements. School board members voted in favor of accepting Clements' resignation despite an overwhelming show of support for the coach from players, parents, and the general public in attendance.

AHS volleyball player Chelsie Freeman spoke on the team's behave in support of Clements.

“When it came out that coach Clements was going to be our coach, we were ecstatic to have a former Lady Sandie represent our program. By the show of girls that are here actions speak louder than words.

"Coach Clements has not only taught us about the game of volleyball but the people we want to be. She taught us to handle adversity with grace and poise.

“If this is for us please take this into consideration. Please don’t let the desire of one overrule the desire of many.

"I plead to you that you please do not accept her resignation. If our voices don’t matter then who are we doing this for," Freeman said.

AHS volleyball player Piper Warren also spoke to the school board, saying that Clements had "lit a fire" in her.

“She lit a fire in me to go out and work. She’s not going to give you a spot. She’s not that coach. So you have to go out there and you prove to her that you have what it takes,” Warren said.

Last week, the AISD placed Clements on paid administrative leave. Clements' resignation statement to local media was very critical of the her current situation at Amarillo High and with the AISD.

"As has been reported, Coach Clements has resigned from her position with the District. During this transition, she has temporarily been placed on paid leave.

"As is the case in most strained employment situations, there are differing viewpoints. Ms. Clements chose to make her side public.

"However, AISD does not comment on personnel matters out of confidentiality and respect for our employees," the AISD said in a statement.

Clements announced her resignation after just one season at AHS. She had originally planned to leave the school when her contract is up at the end of the current school year.

“For a variety of reasons, I have recently resigned from my position as AHS volleyball coach, effective at the end of my contract. I want to be clear, I have not violated any district or UIL standards, and have upheld the teacher code of ethics at all times.

"As I have contemplated this decision over the past several days, I have been overwhelmed with the outpouring of support from current and former players and parents as well as my professional peers. I am so thankful for the success we’ve experienced and the many positive relationships that have developed.

“As a coach, playing time decisions are always difficult. Unfortunately, upon making these decisions in the best interest of team success, I was not supported by athletic, campus, or district administration.

"I was told by campus administration that I needed to recognize the political aspect of my job, and also of theirs. I cannot and will not compromise the integrity of my decisions based on a parent’s political pressure or position.

"I believe strongly in the value of athletics, that being a part of a team is a privilege, and playing time is earned.

“I’m hopeful that AISD will be able to hire an experienced coach with the courage to make the tough playing time decisions and the technical expertise to push our returning players. Next year’s team has the potential to play for a State Championship, and I will be enthusiastically supporting them in their journey," Clements said in a statement.

During her only season at AHS, Clements lead the Lady Sandies to a 33-14 record and the 2018 Texas Class 5A regional semifinal.

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