Bellevue High School Principal Scott Powers is heading to another Eastside school, at a tumultuous time for Bellevue’s celebrated football program.
Bellevue High School’s principal is leaving his position amid intense scrutiny related to the school’s football program, officials said Saturday.
Scott Powers has accepted the principal’s post at nearby Sammamish High, said John Harrison, executive director of schools for the Bellevue district. Powers will be replaced at Bellevue by Vic Anderson, who has been serving as the principal at the district’s Chinook Middle School.
Powers, who has overseen Bellevue for five years, said he was asked if he was interested in the Sammamish job after the principal there took a new position. He said the move to the smaller school was a voluntary decision that “aligns to my growth as a principal.”
“This is not related to football,” Powers said in a text message Saturday.
Bellevue football investigation:
Powers ends his tenure at Bellevue at a tumultuous time for the school’s celebrated football team, the subject of a recent 68-page investigative report produced by the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA). The report found that coaches and staff violated interscholastic rules for years, the district interfered and that the district obstructed the WIAA inquiry.
The report mentioned Powers only on a few pages. In one instance, the report noted, Powers told one teacher he had to be represented by a district lawyer while being interviewed by investigators. That stated requirement made the teacher uncomfortable and ultimately turned out to not be true, the report said.
Powers also seemed to backtrack on a previous statement he’d made related to head coach Butch Goncharoff. An internal district report last year had faulted Goncharoff for not properly investigating or reporting a confrontation between a strength trainer and a football player.
Goncharoff had said he told Powers the trainer had been removed from the team, but Powers did not recall the conversation, according to the report. Powers later told the WIAA investigators that he believed Goncharoff did, in fact, notify him.
Goncharoff had received a letter of reprimand related to his role in the incident. After the coach appealed his discipline, records provided by the team’s booster club show the reprimand letter was removed and replaced with a new letter in which Powers acknowledged Goncharoff did report that trainer Tracy Ford had been severed from the program. But in the new letter, Powers faulted Goncharoff for failing to report “some of the important details of the conflict … and the seriousness of the incident.”