EAGLE POINT, Ore. — A former coach is suspected of sending inappropriate texts to a student. The Eagle Point School District found out through a teacher at the high school. The former coach ended up resigning the day district officials reviewed those texts.
30 year-old Jonathon Bilden coached basketball and volley at Eagle Point high school. He is also an Eagle Point city councilman and a former school board member.
School district officials say besides Bilden, the teacher who reported the text messages resigned. They say claims that she may have lost her job because of this investigation are false. They say once they found out about the text messages, they acted quickly.
“I just want to assure everybody that as soon as the district heard about it on February 6th, we took the allegations seriously. We contacted the coach in question and directed no further contact or communication with the student. It wasn’t until February 11th, a few days later that we actually had access to the text messages and Eagle Point Police came in and began investigation at that point,” said the Eagle Point School District Business Manager, Scott Whitman.
“Completely and totally inaccurate. The same afternoon, February 6th, the teacher saw the text messages and immediately went to both the SRO and the district administration. District officials in management at the high school, knew that same Wednesday. They were slow to report it to the police, they were slow to dismiss the coach, and they were slow to remove the coach from contact with students and so I think from the districts end, somebody aside from the coach needs to be in trouble,” said Oregon Education Association representative, Daniel Burdis.
Burdis says the text messages were not sexual in nature but were still inappropriate. He says Bilden was texting a student in a peer-to-peer manner and offering relationship advice to the student.
Oregon State Police is assisting Eagle Point Police as the investigation continues.