Barrington parent criticizes high school tennis coach


Jonathan Leviss believes Barrington High School girls’ tennis coach Ed Anelundi is verbally abusive to players and school officials are not doing anything about it.

Mr. Leviss, a Barrington resident who spoke on the matter at a school committee meeting Thursday night, said he first witnessed the alleged behavior last year when his daughter was a freshman. Mr. Leviss said he raised the issue to high school athletic director George Finn though he later learned other parents had previously broached the subject.

Mr. Leviss alleged the coach yells at players during practice and matches. He also alleged the coach has made comments about players’ weight in front of each other.

Mr. Leviss said the team’s captains spoke with Mr. Finn about the subject, though reported back to players that they were told nothing could be done.

Mr. Leviss also said he had communicated with school principal Joe Hurley and superintendent Michael Messore about the issue. Mr. Leviss criticized school officials for failing to take action on the matter.

Mr. Hurley, Mr. Anelundi, Mr. Finn and Mr. Messore all had no comment. Mr. Messore said the situation is a personnel matter, however, he added that school officials do not ignore concerns expressed by community members such as parents, students or teachers.


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I'm sorry, but come on. I was yelled at by coaches, insulted, etc at BHS...was just part of being a kid. Parents coddle their kids too much these days. If it was anything like physical assault or real discrimination, it'd be a different story. But being yelled at by a coach built character for me and my friends. We dealt with it and it made us stronger. But today, parents see their kids being criticized have to rush to their a few short years when these tennis players are adults, they won 't have their Mommy and Daddy to step in.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012 | Report this

Coach Anelundi has headed the girls' tennis program for over ten years. For those that don't know Ed Anelundi, he is from the old school. He was my daughter's tennis coach and now coaches my granddaughters. I've never known him to be mean spirited to anyone. But he is a coach, a coach that does not coddle the players under his tutelage. I don't know what was said or how it was said in this circumstance, but I know Coach Anelundi to be of fine character and a gentlemen. It is disappointing then to learn that a certain parent's definition of "verbal abuse" finds it way before the school committee and as a news item on the pages of EastBay RI.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012 | Report this

I agree whole heartily with the above statement regarding this article. Parents these days really do coddle their kids way too much. I attenended BHS and played on the Boy's Tennis Team for every single one of the years I was there and during that time I experienced yelling, insults, etc. by one of my coaches and we learned to take it. I can guarantee you coaches do not yell or insult at their players for just their amusement, at least the good ones anyway, they do so because it helps get the most out of their players and helps them perform on the tennis court or whatever sport they are playing. Its because they have been around the sport and have been around individuals just like some of the players in this article and they know what will work to motivate these players to perform their best in whatever they do.

Barrington High School has always been a school that has been high on athletic excellence as well as intelect and their are a lot of correlations that can be made between the two. How can a student who wants to participate in a sport become great at what they do? They practice their craft, they study it, and they go out and perform to the best of their ability. Now, how does a student become great in the classroom? They practice the material that they learn in class by doing their homework, they study it by studying for tests/quizzes, and they perform by going out and doing well on those test/quizzes.

When you look at the history of the Girl's Tennis Team at Barrington High School you see one of excellence, loyalty, and the willingness by its players to strive to do their best and that is all attributed to one person. While attending BHS I got to speak with Coach Anelundi on many occassions and see his work on the tennis courts since some of my friends had him as a coach and I can tell you from experience he knows what he is doing in his coaching. For anyone else to say otherwise or question how he coaches obviously do not know what they are talking about when it comes to the game of tennis and to him personally.

Thursday, October 25, 2012 | Report this

In the article, it was mentioned that the team captains talked with Mr. Finn and were told that nothing could be done. I was one of the captains that talked to Mr. Finn, and I just wanted to clarify that Mr. Finn told us that we should talk to Eddie about the matter personally BEFORE any outside interference, not that nothing could be done. He explained to us that a coach would much rather hear any complaints from the team captains or the team itself than hear it secondhand from an administrator. Taking Mr. Finn's advice, we decided that if anything were to come up, we would talk to Eddie. However, we didn't see anything that was worth noting, so we didn't feel like we needed to.

Thursday, October 25, 2012 | Report this

I have had a professional relationship with coach Anelundi for over 22 years. During those years I have seen numerous positive relationships develop between Eddie and his students. Mr. Anelundi will not admit it but I can tell you that he has received invitations to weddings of his former students, he also continues to receive notes and cards from many prior students. Clearly his former students, as well as the many recent students who have taken the time to reply to this article, have very favorable thoughts and opinions of Coach Anelundi. I feel badly for educators and coaches that put their time and dedication into their craft, only to have their efforts and hard work shot down in a public format by a disgruntled parent.

Many people do not know that Eddie Anelundi once coached a student that reach Wimbledon. That student was defeated by Martina Navratilova. His efforts are to create a better player and to help a young person to grow to be a success in life. Regardless of whether a student is in the classroom or involved in a school activity; the simple fact is that there will always be some parent that would prefer to have a babysitter care for their child rather than an adult to help better their child. It is easy to simply coddle a student, but we all benefit as a society from an adult who takes the time and effort to teach a young person to become a better student or athlete.

Saturday, November 3, 2012 | Report this

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