Responding to comments made by some Alcoa school board members at its June 17th work session, yes, sports play a significant role in most high schools today, not just Alcoa High School. Look at the Friday night football scores reported by local media. They most often are lopsided; competitive games seem to be a thing of the past. Until college coaches stop recruiting middle school students (yes, Jeremy Pruitt has a “commitment” from a middle school student), as well as freshman, sophomore and junior high school students, the present culture is unlikely to change.
AHS has done an outstanding job tailoring its curriculum for all students, not just the “tuition students that are A-plus.” For those students who don’t want to go to college, aren’t academically prepared, or are financially unable to go, AHS offers Career and Technical Education certifications for such areas as emergency medical technicians and certified nursing assistants, among others. These certifications prepare students to start working in these fields upon graduation and can be used to further their educations.
AHS also offers STEM classes. To be successful in educating a diverse student body, a school must adapt its curriculum to the needs of those students. Clearly, AHS has done precisely that in both its academic and athletic programs.
Incidentally, why doesn’t the existing nepotism policy prohibit two people who are related from serving on the school board simultaneously? Unequivocally, that should be the policy. Perception is reality.
Patricia Hoover Mabry