April 26, 2012

Although our newspaper isn’t exactly a bestseller, I wrote an article about the Booster Club, and how I didn't think they were equal and fair to every sports team. This article has stirred what could be called some disagreement and unhappiness with some people. I decided to dig a little deeper into this controversy, by interviewing a few coaches and the Athletic Director about their opinions on the equality.  I asked a few coaches who wanted to remain anonymous about what they thought. One coach said “I feel like our school supports sports and the Booster Club does a lot for our teams. They came to the matches and the parents went to the meetings. I understand they cycle through uniforms and we have lots of teams so it takes a while. We are getting new uniforms next year and we supply our own shorts.  I don’t see anything too horrible about the Booster Club. ” Another coach said “I am very thankful that students, parents, coaches, and the Booster Club all work together to raise money, to provide teams with the best equipment possible. It doesn’t always happen as quickly as we might like but I understand it’s a financial issue and these things take time. I appreciate everyone's efforts in supporting Smith athletics!”
Then I talked to Coach Casey, who has been coaching here for 8 years. I asked her what she thought of the funding “Honestly, I don’t know, I go to Coach Minnick and ask him for new equipment, and he gives it to me. I asked for new goalie equipment this year, and we will have it for next season. We got new jerseys which we can share with lacrosse and I didn’t think the old ones were that bad. Some programs do their own fundraising which is fine, but I think the Booster Club does a good job. I think more parents from different teams should join the Booster Club, so it’s not just parents from one team. I also think students need to support all the programs. I have tried to support every program, and go and watch games and matches.”
Lastly, I talked to Coach Minnick, the Athletic Director at Smith. First, I asked him how equipment and funding were given out and he said,  “There is no formula, it’s based on need. If a team needs uniforms I will try and get them nice, high quality, not cheap, uniforms that will last for a while. Some funding for these things depend on team participation in fundraisers. I don’t want to constantly bother parents to be giving money so we try to stick to three main fundraisers: the fall and spring carwashes and the fruit sales. These bring in a nice chunk of money to add for the equipment. The philosophy is just simple and easy.”
When I asked him about what he did with the money teams raised in their own fundraisers, the answer was simply that he didn’t want to bother the parents. This is a little unclear, but the money most likely goes into the bank account for when the team does get new uniforms.
From the coaches perspectives, It sounds like the Booster Club does a good job and tries their best to be equal among teams, from the coaches perspective.

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