WAKEFIELD – A Community Meeting was held Tuesday evening about the possibility of a co-op between Wakefield and Allen for girls sports.
From the Wakefield Community School gymnasium, parents, staff, students and coaches all asked questions and made comments about the proposal. No official action has been taken between the two school boards, but Allen has approached Wakefield to consider forming a NSAA Cooperative Agreement for volleyball and girls basketball.
Superintendent Mr. Mark Bejot, in his seventh year with Wakefield, put together a slideshow where questions and comments were addressed as the meeting closed in just under 90 minutes. Time will tell, but Mr. Bejot said both schools are off to a good start.
“We got input tonight (Tuesday) and the board was able to hear,” said Mr. Bejot. “When we do the meeting in Allen, their board will be available and they’ll be able to hear what they think and then I think we’ll come back together and have some more discussion.”
Three members from each school board as well as coaches and principals held a general meeting before setting up a presentation during the Community Meeting.
During the slideshow the estimated numbers for the current year, 2016-17 and each of the next four years were given. Both schools have consistent numbers this year and in the next two, but as Wakefield may decline by a few female athletes between 2019-2021, Allen’s numbers nearly are cut in half for both girls basketball and volleyball in the high school level.
Mr. Mike Pattee is in his fifth year as Superintendent with Allen Consolidated School. Along with one school board member and Pattee, they both will take the comments from Tuesday’s Community Meeting to their next board meeting in December. Allen is reaching out to a number of neighboring communities, but started the initial conversation with Wakefield.
“We want to see what’s best for our kids, for our community and we want to make sure we put ourselves in the best possible position as we can be,” Pattee added.
The history between the two schools, discussion of team name, uniform change, game schedule and practice were also discussed.
Allen already co-ops with Wakefield in wrestling and junior high girls basketball while Wakefield joins the Allen FFA program.
Mr. Pattee mentioned Allen does have strong participation numbers.
“Projecting out in the next three to four years those numbers take a big hit with our girls,” mentioned Mr. Pattee. “Our goal is to sustain some type of program, but if we’re just not able to do that we need to give our kids some type of option.
Both Wakefield and Allen will talk more about the co-op in their respective School Board meetings in December.