Esse Continues Hockey Coaching Career Despite Accusations

By KBJR News 1

April 8, 2013 Updated Apr 8, 2013 at 9:25 PM CST

Cloquet, MN (NNCNOW.com) - The hockey coach, who was at the center of a petition filed by parents who wanted him to be terminated from his position, will get to keep his job.

The Cloquet Public School Board made that decision Monday behind closed doors.

In a four to one vote, the Cloquet Public School Board voted in favor of coach Dave Esse, allowing him to coach for at least another year.

Parents who wanted to have Esse removed from his position accused him of having inappropriate outbursts toward the players.

This is the third time the school board discussed the coach's career.

Based on the School Board's investigation of the allegations they are going to allow him to complete his contract as the boys hockey coach until the contract is up after the next hockey season in 2014.

Esse was at Monday's meeting but was not willing to comment on the accusations.

Some of his players who were present at the meeting say they are on Esse's side.

"I think he's done a great job. He's played high school hockey for Cloquet and he's been here for 14 years. I think he should have a few more seasons under his belt," James Newgren, a Lumberjack Hockey player, said.

"I've talked to both my boys and they both have said he just wants the best for them. He has never demeaned them or called them names. I don't thikn he is that hard on them," Jennifer Kuhlman, a mother of team players, said.

According to our partners at the Duluth News Tribune, some of the parents of team members indicate they will file a lawsuit against the school board, Superintendent Ken Scarbrough and athletic director Tom Lenarz should the vote be in favor of coach esse.

More than 100 community members, including Cloquet, Esko, and Carlton students and parents attended Monday's meeting.

There was a standing ovation once the results were announced by board members.

There were few people who opposed the coach present once the results were indicated.

Justin Reis, NNC.
jreis@kbjr.com