Clubs hurt by practice

Beck Frazier, Broadcasting Manager

At the start of the 2022-23 school year, Bellevue Public Schools began following a new practice for athletics, activities, and clubs. This new practice affects how far groups could travel in a given year.

BPS has allowed a travel distance of 300 miles. What this means, however, is called into question by the wording of the practice.  

In an email last May to Bellevue West coaches and sponsors, the 300 mile distance is described in two distinct ways. The first was described by Activities Director Jon Mauro as a radius and the second was described by the practice as “travel further than 300 miles.” These are two completely different distances because one is a straight line and the other’s distance is lengthened due to roads, which are not perfectly straight.

The distance should be worded the same way every time to avoid possible confusion from the public and so students, coaches, and club sponsors know the exact distance they have to work with when traveling.

No matter which 300 mile barrier is correct, the practice has an effect on athletics, activities, and clubs, which really hurts the students the most as the groups they are a part of can only travel past the barrier every other year. For some students it may not affect them or anything they may be a part of, but there are students who have been affected by this greatly.

One activity that has been affected is the Bellevue West Winter Winds, guard, and combined percussion. The season’s highlight is going to Dayton, Ohio for the WGI World Championship competitions. Without going to Dayton, almost every competition is in Nebraska against the same few schools. 

By only being able to cross the barrier every other year means that the staff in charge of these students must choose what competitions or conferences they want to attend carefully, while at the same time, give the students enough of an experience to keep them coming back.