Rialto findings likely to be released soon

A source within the Rialto Unified School District indicate that the findings regarding the inquiry into the Rialto High School girls basketball program will be released shortly after Superintendent Dr. Harold Cebrun returns from a conference in Monterey later this week.

The inquiry into the program and head coach Michael Anderson started after the family of former player Diamond Smith met with school and district officials about problems between Smith, a standout player for the Knights for three years, and Anderson — who led Rialto to a share of the Citrus Belt League championship last season and the CBL lead going into Wednesday night’s game at Redlands East Valley. Smith has transferred to Carter since the meeting according to her mother, Betsy Wilson.

Wilson accused Anderson of recruiting from outside of RHS’ enrollment zone, a charge that prompted the inquiry. However, Anderson has gotten support from parents of players still within the Rialto program.

“Michael Anderson is a great person and has done a lot for my daughter and the Rialto community,” said Kimberly Dobard, mother of junior forward Brittani Walker. “He is a great teacher and the team has done great since he’s been the coach. He’s given my daughter opportunities that she might not have had.”

The CIF-SS office, through e-mail correspondence with Director of Communciations Thom Simmons, has indicated that it will wait for RUSD’s findings before deciding whether or not to launch an inquiry of its own.

“Neither Rialto High School, Rialto Unified School District nor the family involved has asked us to intercede in any way at this time,” Simmons said via e-mail. “As is standard operating procedure whenever an accusation is brought against a school or a member of that school’s athletic department we allow the school the opportunity to do their due diligence first and only intercede if their is a feeling that more needs to done whether that be in terms of investigations and/or sanctions applied. It is my understanding that the school district is conducting their own investigation and we will respect their process.”