This semester, the administration implemented a new schedule exclusively for students in the junior high: if students are part of a Pinewood sports team, they go to practice with the team during D period, while non-athlete students are in P.E.
“So many students had things after school that they were doing: piano lessons, doctor appointments, other sports that they were playing for club teams and things like that,” principal Mark Gardner said. “When we tried to just practice after school only, some of the practices only had a few kids there, or they couldn’t have a team because we couldn’t get people to join up.”
The new arrangement lets students who play on multiple sports teams continue to do both without having to choose because of a lack of time.
“I do like the change, especially for [flag] football because a lot of people miss practice after school, so when it’s during P.E., everyone’s always there, and it gives us a lot better chance to learn the plays and get better,” eighth grader Jack Osborne said.
High schoolers already had the privelege of a study hall before the change, while junior high students attended P.E. the whole year.
It’s not only the flag football players who appreciate the change. Other Pinewood sports teams have seen benefits as well, like the track team.
“The [students] who have talked to me that play sports outside of Pinewood have said it’s really helped it feel less stressful because now they don’t have to choose which [practice] they’re going to go to,” junior high track coach and science teacher Elaina Tyson said.
This new arrangement is temporary, but the administration is attempting to extend it to the rest of the year.
“It might only be a one semester solution, but we’re working on it. We did it as a trial this semester, but the trial’s worked pretty well; now the question is can we do it for next semester,” Gardner said.