Purdy schools discuss junior high sports
New rules may allow 6th graders to join basketball team
Purdy schools may be reorganizing its basketball program to bring sixth grade athletes up to a more competitive level of play and free up resources to launch a junior high school baseball program.
Assistant Principal and Athletic Director Brian Anton told the Purdy School board that the Missouri State High School Activities Association is considering a change that would allow the school the option of incorporating its sixth graders into the junior high basketball program.
He said it would not be a mandatory change, but if the district were to decide to make the change, it could eliminate its fifth- and sixth-grade basketball program, move the sixth-graders to the junior high level, and free up a bus and coaching stipend that would allow the district to start a junior high baseball program.
The down side to the move, Anton said, is that the elimination of the current fifth- and sixth-grade program would leave fifth-graders without a school basketball team. He also said fifth-graders would still have club basketball programs, so they would not be left without a team entirely.
“On the plus side, we would get the sixth graders on to a more competitive game, a higher level of play,” Anton said.
He also said Purdy is the only school in its conference that does not offer a junior high baseball program.
The school board did not make a decision on the potential change, but at least one board member liked the idea of starting a new baseball program for junior high athletes.
“I would hate to be the only school in the conference not doing that,” Board Member Ken Terry said.
Purdy Schools have scheduled its summer school session for May 27 through June 24.
The school is required by the state to wait a specific number of days after the regular school year before it can start its summer school session.
Superintendent Mindi Gates said the May 27 through June 24 schedule will allow the district to provide the mandatory 220 hours of instruction for summer school.
Gates also said the school is staying strong and healthy, reporting no cases of COVID-19 among students and staff over the past month.
“That’s been positive,” Gates said, adding that the school does not currently have students or staff in quarantine either.
Gates also said a number of Purdy teachers attended a Barry County vaccination clinic held in Cassville on March 15.
“The vaccine category that opened today included educators,” Gates said. “Today everyone who wanted to got the vaccine. About 50 teachers got it.”
As of Monday, she said, about half of Purdy’s staff had received the vaccine.
Gates also said that elementary school students have began having lunch in the school cafeteria again, after having to eat in classrooms due to COVID concerns all year.
“That’s an exciting piece of normalcy,” she said.