Teachers union continues to fight release of investigation into Ayala High coach

CHINO >> A teachers union is continuing to fight the release of results from a Chino Valley Unified investigation into allegations that an Ayala High teacher bullied students.

On April 5, San Bernardino Superior Court Judge David Cohn ruled against the Associated Chino Teachers’ attempt to block the school district from releasing the results of its query into teacher Bernie Wendling, who also served as the school’s girls volleyball coach.

On Tuesday, before Cohn’s ruling was delivered to the district, the ACT, which represents teachers in Chino Valley Unified, appealed his decision.

At the Nov. 3 meeting of the Chino Valley school board, 17 people, including current and past members of the Ayala varsity girls volleyball team, spoke during the public comments portion of the agenda, accusing Wendling of bullying team members.

“I was a ‘cancer’ to the team. I was a ‘black hole’ on the court and volleyball was not my sport,” Ashley Elias, a 2015 graduate, said Wendling told her. “I would do humiliating drills and it would take his all-star athlete on the team (intervening) to make him stop.”

At the Nov. 17 school board meeting, 16 of Wendling’s supporters came to his defense.

“That is not what coach’s intentions were,” said Alyssa Swatek, who played four years under Wendling, and served as an assistant coach after graduation. “I wouldn’t be where I am today without the life lessons I learned on the court.”

Wendling did not…

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