Wade Standley, Norman North football coach, said he thought it would be an exciting time for NPS schools if all goes well and the bond issue is supported by Norman voters.
“We want to strive for excellence in everything: academics and extra-curriculars,” Standley said. “There’s no question that athletics is an extension of what kids are doing in school,” he said. “Being on a team is a positive experience.”
Greg Nation, Norman High football coach, said Norman schools need to keep up with other schools.
“As far as athletic facilities go, we’re behind schools like Edmond and Yukon,” he emphasized. “Our athletes want to be proud when they walk on the field.”
Thompson said that by supporting athletics, NPS could enhance skills students can use beyond his or her primary years.
“Students learn how to compete and work with others,” Thompson said. “Students become better at academics too because they have to pass to play, and they realize they can succeed in school. And a lot of our students continue with advanced education because they have participated in sports.”
Nation said that through sports, he sees students set goals and meet them and learn how to use determination and confidence to succeed in whatever path they choose to follow.
“We’re not teaching them about football, we’re teaching them about life,” he said.
NPS middle school athletics would also see several improvements if the 2014 bond issue succeeds. Two middle school wrestling facilities that would include a workout room to also serve as a safe room, locker rooms and restrooms are set to be built. One of the facilities would serve both Longfellow and Whittier students and the other facility would serve both Irving and Alcott students.
“The addition of the wrestling facilities is a big deal because they can be used as safe rooms by the whole school,” Keith Lough, Whittier athletic director and 8th grade football coach, said.