Two Janesville Parker High School coaches are stepping down, The Gazette learned Friday.
Wrestling coach Daniel Jackson and basketball coach Keith Miller are resigning from their coaching jobs, said Patrick Gasper, communications spokesman for the Janesville School District. They will continue to be employed with school district, however.
In a resignation letter released to the media, Miller thanked his coaching staff, support system and players.
“I will absolutely miss the time I was able to spend with great people because of our shared connection to the program,” Miller stated in his letter. “I hope that my time as Head Coach has given West Side basketball a louder voice, and I plan to continue to be a voice that speaks up for our young basketball talent. My family and I have centered our lives around Parker Basketball, and now with our third child on the way it’s time to center our lives back around each other.”
Miller spent three seasons as Vikings head coach. Parker went 6-63 in those three seasons.
Jackson did not immediately return a voicemail seeking comment on his resignation. Parker athletic director John Zimmerman and principal Chris Laue said Jackson indicated a desire to spend more time with his family.
Jackson, who is Dean of Students at Marshall Middle School, had been Parker’s wrestling coach for the past five seasons.
“The rigors of being a high school coach are very high, and I can totally see where, if an individual has young children—like Mr. Miller or Mr. Jackson—it’s hard to balance all that,” Laue said. “I have been very appreciative of both gentlemen and the work they have done. The door would always be open for them to come back should they ever wish to do that.”
post at the end of this school, as The Gazette reported earlier this week. Zimmerman spent one year as Parker’s athletic director. He was hired in August to replace Joe Dye.
“I missed the classroom; there’s no more to it than that,” Zimmerman said Friday. “When I took the job in August, we made an agreement that I wanted to try it for a year, and if I didn’t feel like it was a fit for me, I could go back to the classroom and my old job.”
Zimmerman has taught at Parker since 1994 and is the instructional business manager of the business and marketing department. He continued to teach two business and marketing classes and was in charge of the DECA (Distributive Education Club of America) program.
“I wanted to try it, and I’m glad I did, but I’m a better fit in the classroom,” Zimmerman said. “It was about what I expected in terms of time and commitment. The Parker staff and coaches have been very good to me and easy to work with, I just didn’t enjoy it as much as I did in the classroom.”
“He is an outstanding educator and has done a phenomenal job as our athletic director this year,” Laue said. “But I support his interest and desire in getting back to the classroom more. He misses that, and he’s outstanding at any role. As long as I can keep him here at Parker, I’m going to be happy.”
Laue said the open AD and coaching positions will be posted in the near future, perhaps as soon as 10 days from now.
“I really appreciate our coaches telling us early, because we’re at the point now where we’re putting postings out for teaching positions, and we’re going to post those (the sports positions), also,” Laue said. “That may generate someone on our staff who has training and interest, or it may be someone out there who would meet the criteria for a position we’re offering to come from another district. And it just gives us time, which is a gift you don’t always get.”
News reporter Cathy Idzerda contributed to this story.