BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WOOD) — Documents reveal new information about an abrupt announcement earlier this year by Battle Creek Central to bar fans from some high school basketball games.
In January, Battle Creek Central’s then-athletic director, Charles Seils, announced fans would be banned from games against Kalamazoo Central and Loy Norrix. District leaders at the time told News 8 they weren’t consulted before that decision was announced. But emails provide new information about the fallout, including the athletic director’s resignation.
A day after the district released a public statement saying they were not consulted in the fan ban decision in January, Battle Creek Public Schools superintendent Kimberly Carter emailed a “memo of concern” to Seils.
“Your decision to exclude families from athletic events without discussion or communication with district leadership once again placed the district’s reputation in jeopardy and resulted in a waste of human resources as individuals had to redirect their work to respond to the challenge created by your actions,” Carter wrote.
The memo went on to say, “It has become increasingly evident that you are struggling to meet district expectations and your lack of judgment and timely communication leaves me questioning your ability to lead district programs.”
Carter then wrote that Seils violated board policy and warned, “any additional violations will result in further disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.”
It doesn’t say if Seils faced any discipline.
But on Jan. 30, 17 days after the memo, Seils emailed the superintendent his letter of resignation.
Over the phone, Seils — who has since moved to northern Wisconsin — told News 8 he left because it was “not where he wanted to raise (his) family,” and that he has “no ill will toward Battle Creek.”
The three schools have since lifted the initial fan ban, instead giving each athlete four tickets for family members to attend games. The districts said limiting fans during games was over safety concerns and would be addressed again after the season.