Virginia’s largest school district says it will bring in a third party to launch a probe into an anonymous email sent to one of its high school cheer coaches.
The email had racist overtones and highlighted a previous coach’s distinctly Black features.
Oakton High School cheerleading coach Jillian Domenech received the correspondence in March, local station WTOP reported last week.
The email came from an anonymous sender and started with a very friendly greeting, saying, “Hello Coach Jillian … welcome to Oakton.” It continued by acknowledging she is an alumna of the school before diving swiftly into what the person calls a “sensitive topic.”
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The nameless sender claimed to speak for a large group of parents and students who say they are not “comfortable with another colored individual coaching cheerleading.”
Then the writer placed emphasis on the school’s history of cheer coaches and how, up until recently, most of them had been white. Last school semester, from August 2022 to November 2022, the school hired a Black person, Faith Dabrio, to coach the squad, but she eventually left for reasons unrelated to issues raised in the email.
“I left because I wasn’t getting support from administration,” Dabrio said in an interview with local station WJLA on Wednesday, May 17. After reading the email sent to her replacement Domenech, she said she was left “in complete shock.”
The coach before Dabrio was also Black.
According to the message, current and past Oakton cheerleaders had issues with Dabrio’s complexion, despite others believing she was a nice person.
“Many of the girls were shocked to see another coach last season with such dark and strong features,” the message said.
Dabrio said she cried after reading the email, which she learned about from a parent this month. “My skin color has nothing to do with how I do my job,” she told WTOP.
However, the author of the email implied that her Blackness might tarnish the school’s legacy.
“I was told, were not a good fit for Oakton, and they both were of an African American decent. This has been discussed with many alumni cheerleaders,” the person wrote. “Our fear is that the history of Oakton cheerleading will be tarnished and remembered with conversations of ‘people’ who destroyed something that so many people worked hard for. Our cheerleaders have always had a positive experience and great memories.”
The writer complained that these issues were brought to the administration but to no avail. The school ignored their desire to have only white cheer coaches.
WTOP reports the school’s principal, Jamie Lane, said she instructed the school system’s technology staff to locate the source of the email. However, the staffer could not.
On Monday, May 8, Lane drafted a letter to the school community stating, “Oakton High School stands united against all forms of hate, racism, and discrimination.”
The administrator assured the new coach and the community, “The cheer team parents and student-athletes stand 100% with this sentiment.”
The Fairfax County NAACP released a statement after the email became public, urging the district to make sure the young people on the cheer team are safe considering the toxicity of the correspondence and the fact that “FCPS is no closer to ascertaining the identity of the email’s author.”
“The more time that passes where children are subjected to a threat of unknown origin and unknown magnitude, the greater the danger to their physical and emotional well-being,” the statement said.
Sujatha Hampton, the education chair of the Fairfax County NAACP, said she could not believe what she read, stating that the email “sounded like it was right out of the 1950s from the Massive Resistance.”
She also said that until all students can be safe and the district knows who is behind the venomous words, cheer should be canceled.
“It made it feel like there was a fundamental culture that was unsafe for not just Black children, but all children there,” she added.
Fairfax County police investigated the incident as a biased act. Officers also were unable to track where the email came from, but the sender’s action broke no laws, so no action could be taken against whoever sent the message.
One thought on “‘Right Out of the 1950s’: Virginia Cheer Coach Receives Anonymous Email Saying Black Woman Is ‘Not a Good Fit’ for High School Team Because She’s ‘Colored’”
Typical satanic racist demons.