WEBER COUNTY, Utah (ABC4) — The Weber High School principal who was placed on administrative leave earlier this month allegedly mishandled an internal investigation into the school’s football program, prompting a follow-up investigation and her being placed on leave.
Weber School District spokesperson Lane Findlay said Principal Chris Earnest was tasked with investigating allegations against the coaching staff for the Weber High School football team. A complaint alleged the coaches had inappropriately recruited “one or more players” from the Davis School District.
“It was ultimately determined a WHS coach exercised undue influence in the recruitment of players,” Findlay said in a press release.
Following the allegations made against the WHS football coaching staff, Principal Earnest was tasked with the investigation and, if necessary, taking appropriate administrative actions.
“At the conclusion of her investigation, Weber School District officials received complaints over how the investigation was handled by Ms. Earnest,” reported Findlay. “To ensure that WSD policies and procedures were properly followed, district officials initiated a follow-up investigation.”
As is standard procedure, Earnest was placed on paid administrative leave pending the investigation. Weber School District officials said they received other allegations of unprofessional conduct and potential violations of District policies while conducting their investigation.
Weber School District additionally referred the case to the Region 1 Board of Managers. According to Findlay, sanctions were issued against Weber High School by this board of Managers.
Utah High School Activities Association was tasked with determining the eligibility of the players involved.
Weber School District was either not at liberty or prohibited by privacy laws to release further information. ABC4 reached out to the USHAA for further comment and has yet to hear back by the time of publication. This story will be updated should USHAA release a statement.
Findlay said Weber School District’s investigation remains ongoing and no further information will be released at this time “out of respect” for the parties involved.