POLITICS

Rob Ford Loses Football Coach Job At Don Bosco High School

05/22/2013 04:33 EDT | Updated 05/22/2013 04:33 EDT
CP

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has been dismissed as head football coach at Etobicoke’s Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School.

The Toronto Star reported on Wednesday afternoon that the decision, which came from the Catholic school board, does not appear to be related to allegations Ford was caught on tape smoking crack cocaine.

Rather, the paper reports, it seems controversial comments Ford made back in March were deemed offside.

Ford angered parents and teachers at the high school and prompted an investigation by the school board after he was accused of saying “disgusting” things about the school to Sun News.

In an interview with Sun host David Menzies, Ford described Don Bosco as a “tough school” with many kids from gangs and broken homes.

“If it wasn’t for this football, these kids just wouldn’t go to school,” he said. “They have no reason to go to school. You can’t tell them to get an education. But I use the football as a carrot. I said: If you don’t go to school, and you’re [not] passing, you don’t play football. Oh, they’ll do backflips to play football,” Ford said.

Ford also agreed with Menzie’s suggestion that many kids would be dead or in jail if not for his efforts to launch a team at the school more than a decade ago.

That assessment of the school and neighbourhood didn’t sit well with teachers, who complained in an anonymous letter to senior board officials.

Bruce Rodrigues, Director of Education with the Toronto Catholic District School Board, released a statement Wednesday afternoon.

“This is an exciting game that helps to develop strategic thinking, strength and agility while also fostering values such as teamwork, perseverance and good sportsmanship. Mr. Ford has helped our students rise to the challenge and realize their potential as both football players and young men,” said Rodrigues. “This decision was based on what is best for our students, our school and the Don Bosco community."

Ford’s passion for football has gotten him in hot water in the past.

He has been accused on more than one occasion of leaving council meetings early to coach and was slammed in November after a TTC bus was rerouted to pick up his players after a game.

Ford was nearly turfed from office after participating in a vote on whether he should have to repay $3,150 in donations from lobbyists to The Rob Ford Football Foundation.

See the reaction to Ford's dismissal from his beloved team in the gallery below.

Rob Ford Fired As Football Coach