Coach Barbay gets two-year contract with Jasper ISD

It appears that Jasper head football coach and athletic director Darrell Barbay will most likely be around for some time.

The superintendent of the Jasper Independent School District, Gerald Hudson, told school board members on Monday evening that negotiations with Barbay had resulted in an acceptable agreement.

Following the announcement, Hudson proposed that the board sign a two-year employment contract with Barbay, and the measure passed unanimously.

Barbay, along with other members of the staff, had previously only had one-year contracts. However, Hudson said he believed that the two-year contract was necessary for Barbay to be able to recruit other coaches to the athletic staff.

The contract also is said to specify that Barbay will continue to serve as athletic director and Jasper High School head football coach.

The controversy surrounding Barbay and his employment with the school surfaced last month when it was learned that the administration - at the urging of the board - had given Barbay a deadline of March 20 to accept a change in position, or take a job elsewhere.

However, a few days later, following community concern and a walk-out and protest by students at the high school, the administration apparently had a change of heart and decided to try to work out the details of a new contract.

In other action before the board, a question was raised by school board member Mark Durand, who questioned whether or not students involved in a recent protest to support Barbay would be counted as absent or present on that day, and how it would be represented to the Texas Education Agency, which directs funding for schools based on several factors, including attendance.

Hudson said the students would be counted and reported as present. He later said on Tuesday that the students would be classified as such because they were there at the beginning of the school day and that they were still on campus.

Additionally, Hudson said that at all times the students were under supervision of the coaching staff.

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