Dual sport athletes were discussed once again at the most recent Osceola School Board meeting.
Lisa Schiebel has addressed the board regularly regarding the issue in recent months and rose to speak again at this meeting. She said she’s encouraged by the dialogue that’s taking place on dual sports and urged the board to keep listening.
“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, that collaboration and communication are needed for good decision making,” she said. “We trust that the administration and that our greatest sport ambassadors here at Osceola, the coaches, are able to work together.”
She said the board has a responsibility to represent the community’s desires on all issues, including dual sports.
“Don’t forget there is also a partnership commitment that this district makes with students, families and the community,” she said. “Don’t disregard the messages made not only by us, but by other parents, community members, and most importantly the students who voiced their support for dual sports.”
Following Schiebel’s comments, Osceola assistant principal and athletic director Scott Newton updated the board on the review of dual athletics. On August 24, 13 Osceola coaches met to discuss dual sport options.
“We had what I would call a good discussion,” Newton said. “We discussed how do we define what a dual sport athlete is, and how we go forward from there.”
Newton issued a survey to the coaches to further gauge their stance on dual sports. The responses will be brought to the board when the surveys are complete, and the next step will be to discuss the issue directly with the student athletes. Newton said he will try to speak with as many student athletes as possible, and may implement a system similar to the senior exit interviews that were conducted last spring.
“Right now, in the fall alone, we have 240-some student athletes,” he said. “So we want to make sure we have open dialogue with all the kids.”
The details of that dialogue are still being worked out, but Newton hopes to speak with the students by early to mid September and be able to bring all of the information to the board by October.
Sup. Mark Luebker said he appreciated the dialogue the coaches had on August 24, especially given how multifaceted the dual sport issue is.
“Really there is a lot more to the discussion than what people think,” he said. “There’s a lot of ‘what ifs’ and ‘what abouts.’ I think the coaches did a really nice job to be passionate about their sport, but also be realistic as well.”