Email Newsletter

Longtime Edison HS basketball coach fired, sparking community backlash

Fairfax County Public Schools has fired longtime Edison High School basketball coach Dianne Lewis, leading to community backlash.

FCPS confirmed to FFXnow that Lewis was relieved from her duties as the varsity girls’ basketball coach at the Alexandria area high school.

“Edison HS is taking a new direction with our basketball coaching this coming school year,” an FCPS spokesperson said. “This decision was not made lightly, and was done so in the best interest of the school community. Edison HS leadership is committed to ensuring that the basketball program will remain strong and will continue to support our amazing student athletes in the coming school year.”

However, some in the community are making their disagreement with the decision clear. Late last week, a Change.org petition was set up asking FCPS to “overturn the firing” and reinstate Lewis. The petition claims the school gave no reason for Lewis’s firing.

“This heartbreaking blindsided firing of Coach Lewis came with no explanation to her, the players, parents or the community and we refuse to accept this reckless decision,” it reads.

As of this morning (Wednesday), the petition has gotten 2,243 signatures.

“Upon advice of counsel, I cannot comment at this time. I do appreciate your interest in this story,” Lewis told FFXnow.

The details of what exactly led to Lewis’s firing are scant.

She had been Edison’s varsity girls’ basketball coach for more than 20 years, guiding the team to hundreds of wins, a number of conference titles, regional championships, and several state championship appearances. This past season, the team went to states for the first time in several seasons.

A number of Lewis’s former players went on to play for major collegiate programs as well.

Lewis also worked with USA Basketball as an assistant coach, mostly helping to coach under-17 teams.

She had a positive impact on the lives of countless young players and students, according to many who left comments on the petition.

“Coach Lewis has done so much for Edison’s basketball program. She has changed lives and the community. She deserves her job back!!” reads one comment.

“I worked alongside Coach Lewis for 3 years and she was never anything less than a professional, upstanding role model and citizen,” reads another. “She held her student-athletes to the highest standard on and off the court. To hear she has been fired [is] unconscionable and a true loss to the Edison community.”

“I’m signing this petition because Coach Lewis means so much to so many people and has changed so many peoples lives including mine,” reads a comment from 2022 All-Met player Toni McCrae. “She was wrongfully fired for discrimination purposes and deserves to be fought for. I love her so much and I’m not gonna let them just take her job away from her!!”

FCPS didn’t comment specifically on the petition when contacted by FFXnow.

Irene Fakulujo protesting the dismissal of Coach Lewis outside of Edison High (staff photo by Matt Blitz)

This morning, Irene Fakulujo was outside of the school protesting Lewis’s dismissal and asking for her reinstatement. Her daughter plays on the basketball team and says Lewis was always encouraging to the players.

“She gave them a lot of confidence and they are better people because of her,” Fakulujo told FFXnow.

She said that parents and the players weren’t given a reason for why Lewis was let go beyond an email simply saying her contract wasn’t being renewed.

“They should have talked to the girls. I saw what Coach Lewis has done for them,” Fakulujo said. “We are really hoping [she gets reinstated]. We are really hoping so.”

Recent Stories

The weekend is almost here. Before you sneak in one last visit to The Water Mine this summer or head to bed for some much-needed sleep, let’s revisit the past…

The Town of Vienna has now committed about a third of the $7 million bequeathed by late councilmember Maud Robinson for building sidewalks to specific projects. As of Aug. 2,…

(Updated at 12:50 a.m. on 8/13/2022) A man from Falls Church has been arrested after allegedly sexually assaulting a patient under his care when he worked at Inova Fair Oaks…

Rebranding could be on the horizon for Sunset Business Park in the Town of Herndon.  The property owners of one-story buildings with fading maroon facades are exploring the possibility of…

Do you struggle with anxiety, depression, stress, grief, trauma or anger? Are
you ready to make a change?

Lauren K. Nickum, LCSW, CSAC from Peaceful Mind Solutions is now taking new
clients for psychotherapy. Lauren has over 10 years of experience treating
mental health disorders and general life stress in adults and adolescents. For
more information visit
peacefulmindsolutions.com.

Submit your own Community Post here.

The I – On Defense Podcast provides breathtaking analysis that brings the top military and defense issues into focus.

We provide expert defense industry commentary — often times in 30 minutes or less. Check out the I – On Defense Podcast at Apple, Spotify, or Google — or your favorite podcast server. Or find us at www.buzzsprout.com/1968463.

Submit your own Community Post here.

×

Subscribe to our mailing list