Coaches sit in classes

By Erin Moy

Athletics Program heads have been sitting in on upper school classes in a Sports Council-initiated program which went on for the first week of March.

Upper school teachers were given the choice to have the Program Heads sit in on their classes, and the Athletic Program Heads chose the classes to sit in on. Out of the 28 Athletic Program Heads, 20 attended student classes.

“This program was about building community and trying to let the coaches see what the kids go through in the classroom,” Head of Athletics Audrius Barzdukas said.

“It is a good opportunity for teachers to reach out to the students more and make some changes,” Student Athletic Advisory Council member Danny Fujinaka ’10 said.

This particular program was designed by the Sports Council, a group led by David Hinden, an upper school science teacher.

“I think it will be useful, particularly for off-campus coaches who may not realize the extent of our students’ academic load,” Hinden said. “We hope to continue it and encourage teachers to visit the coaches’ classroom, i.e., the practice field.”

“I think the coaches enjoyed it, the teachers enjoyed it and the kids enjoyed it,” Athletic Director Terry Barnum said.

Barnum added that he hopes to get more coaches involved later in the year.

“The Sports Council this year has made an effort to have community building as one if its big themes,” Barzdukas said.

“The Sports Council deals more with teacher and class issues and we deal with planning student events and resolving student-athelete issues,” Fujinaka said of the SAAC.

Barzdukas feels that some of the program’s main goals were to get different branches of the school talking as well as to get coaches out of normal routines.

“Harvard-Westlake is a complex community and anything that we can do to help different segments of our commumnity learn about other parts of our community is a good thing,” Barzdukas said.

The Sports Council hopes to continue the program.

“This gave some of the coaches an opportunity to experience Harvard-Westlake in a completely new way,” Barzdukas said.