Investigation into Lake football coach continues

MILLBURY — A law firm is handling the “improper communications” investigation into the Lake High School football coach.

At Wednesday’s meeting, Superintendent Jim Witt thanked the firm Flannery Georgalis, Cleveland, for handling the investigation into Josh Andrews, who was relieved of his duties on Monday.

“This week has been difficult, to say the least,” Witt said.

Andrews is also the high school assistant principal and is also on leave from that position, said school board President John Ervin. He is on leave with pay, Ervin said, which is standard procedure in these types of incidents.

Ervin said there is no timeline for the investigation, but he hopes it is completed soon.

“It just started today,” he said.

There were several people in the audience at Wednesday’s board meeting, but no one spoke during the public comment section.

In a statement on Monday, the Lake administration said that Andrews had been relieved of his duties at Lake High School pending the outcome of an investigation into improper communications.

David Rymers, a long-time assistant and the current defensive coordinator, is the interim head football coach.

Andrews was hired as Lake head football coach in February 2019, replacing Mark Emans. Andrews is in his fourth season at Lake, where he has accumulated a 12-22 record, including 1-4 this season.

Andrews, a 2001 graduate of Wauseon High School, had been an assistant under Emans for six seasons. He also played for Emans at Wauseon.

Andrews played collegiately at Tri-State University where he earned a degree in education. He later earned his master’s of education in administration from Bowling Green State University.

Prior to his time at Lake, Andrews was a teacher and assistant coach at Swanton for eight seasons. Before being hired as head football coach, he had been the assistant principal at Lake High School and Middle School for three years.

In April, the board approved a new three-year administrative contract for Andrews. His salary is $67,549.

Also at the meeting, the board:

• Hired Brenda Pennington, elementary teacher, and Kaitlyn Bachmayer, elementary building substitute.

• Heard Jodi Takats, director of curriculum and special education, say that a new math curriculum is being implemented district wide.

“It is different … but we’re moving forward,” she said.

• Approved donations of $3,500 from Jones Hamilton Co., $300 in hygiene products from S&D Capital, $150 in hygiene products from Bethlehem Lutheran Church, $150 from Genoa Bank, school supplies valued at $100 from Wood County Educational Service Center, $100 from Tri-State Expedited Service Inc., school supplies valued at $60 from Matt and Tammey Plessner and school supplies valued at $40 from the Wallace family.

• Went into executive session to discuss employment of an employee, dismissal of an employee, discipline of an employee and investigation of charges/complaints. No action was taken.