Mesa Skyline students walked out and gathered at the football stadium’s bleachers Wednesday morning before the start of school, as a sign of protest to the administration’s firing last week of football coach Angelo Paffumi.
Tiffanie Akin, a mother of a player in the football program, said the walk out was done before school to make sure “the kids were on time (for classes), so no one got in trouble or caused problems.”
“These parents and kids aren’t going away,” she said. “This isn’t just about Paffumi. It’s about all sports at Skyline.”
Paffumi, who is remaining as a teacher at Skyline, said he went out to the stadium to meet the players and parents. He gave a speech and reiterated they get to class when the bell rang at 8:30.
“I went out there and said, ‘You have to go about it the right way,’ ” Paffumi said. “About 400 kids and parents were there. It was a neat deal.
“It’s been overwhelming (the support). I’ve had kids say they didn’t have a lot of pride in themselves until they went through our program. It was about what it taught them. That’s awesome.”