Parents Unite To Save Sports Teams
By: Alex Scofield
A group of town parents is hoping they can come together to Save Bourne Sports.
Last week, the school committee announced more than $250,000 in cuts across the district, $40,000 of which would be targeted from the athletic department budget.
Bourne Athletic Director Jessica M. Sullivan said that some of those cuts would come this winter through cutting the boys’ and girls’ basketball programs at the middle school level.
The district would also save money because some sports programs at the high school would not be able to run due to the lack of participation, such as winter cheerleading.
Ms. Sullivan added that there would be no boys’ junior varsity hockey program; instead the athletes who would typically play on that team would lace up their skates for the varsity squad.
There were also only a small number of girls who went out for the freshman girls’ basketball team this year, Ms. Sullivan said, so they will instead be placed on the girls’ junior varsity team.
“Everybody has been able to make a team at the high school this winter,” Mr. Sullivan said.
It might be a different story for spring sports, though.
At the high school, junior varsity lacrosse, softball, and baseball have all been tentatively cut for the coming spring, Ms. Sullivan said, at a savings of about $20,000 to the district.
Thomas C. Gibson, president of Bourne Youth Baseball, has organized a fundraising effort called Save Bourne Sports to help the district restore some of the programs currently on the chopping block.
“I know we have a huge deficit and we have cuts we’re going to have to make,” he said. “I just feel bad that it’s the kids who are going to have to suffer from it.”
Mr. Gibson said the Save Bourne Sports campaign is modeled after a similar effort that took place during the early 1990s, which was able to raise approximately $100,000 over the course of six years.
He said a Save Bourne Sports meeting was held last Thursday and that another is scheduled for Wednesday, December 16, at the Bourne Veterans Memorial Community building at 6:30 PM on Main Street in Buzzards Bay.
The meeting is open to anyone who wants to get involved in the effort, Mr. Gibson said, and he is willing to listen to creative fundraising suggestions.
“Hopefully we can come up with some fundraising ideas that people want to spend money on, so we can help these kids,” he said.
Mr. Gibson said the Save Bourne Sports campaign is more about raising money, though.
As so much of the costs associated with school sports come from transportation, Mr. Gibson said that parents in the campaign would consider providing the wheels athletes need to go to away games.
“We’re looking for any way around letting these sports get cut,” he said.
Ms. Sullivan said that, as the school’s athletic director, she would not be directly involved in the fundraising, but she said she would be grateful for any efforts taken by members of the public to help restore sports. Given the financial condition of the district, though, she said she did not imagine they had any other sports.
“If they want to be able to bring back these sports, they’re going to have to do some fundraising,” she said.
For more information about the Save Bourne Sports, Mr. Gibson said he can be reached by e-mail email@example.com.
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