Stan Latkowski was relieved of his duties as Hand boys soccer head coach on Wednesday for “incredibly offensive and insensitive language including vulgarities and derogatory remarks toward identifiable groups,” said Thomas Scarice, the superintendent of schools for Madison Public Schools.
The incident in question allegedly took place on Oct. 11, “in the presence of student-athletes,” according to Scarice, an incident involving both Latkowski and volunteer assistant coach Dave Yerby. Both men were placed on leave and missed two games before the decision to remove them came down Wednesday.
Assistant coach Anthony Mancini has been named interim head coach. Dave Dikranian, the head girls soccer coach, and his father, Bob, will help assist.
Latkowski had no comment when reached Thursday afternoon.
Latkowski, who was in his 10th year as head coach, led the Tigers to the Class L state championship last season and was a previous Area Coach of the Year for the New Haven Register.
Hand had compiled a 9-1-1 record until the incident occurred.
Scarice said Latkowski received plenty of support from his players, both current and past, and parents of the current players.
“But the district sets the bar for what we determine to be acceptable behavior and this was clearly not acceptable,” Scarice said.
Scarice said Latkowski was “was incredibly remorseful and saddened by everything and that’s exactly what I hoped for. He understood the seriousness and certainly approached it in a way to try and repair the damage done.”
Scarice also said the opportunity exists for Latkowski to re-apply for his old job in the off-season.
“If he is interested in redeeming his stature in the athletic and greater school community in Madison, we would welcome the opportunity to reconcile,” Scarice said.
“This does not excuse his behavior in the slightest. But it does offer an opportunity to repair the damage done. We would set the conditions, and again, this would be all on him, by which he must comply and comply in an authentic way so that he can apologetically mend the damage done.”