Four new coaches were formally introduced July 27 at the Sidney School Board meeting, filling positions at different levels within the district.
Sophia Ekness was announced as a new high school junior varsity volleyball coach, Emily Keegan and Hailey Steinbeisser were announced as middle school volleyball coaches and Weslie Zoanni was introduced as a high school assistant cheerleading coach.
Also at the school board meeting July 27, one coach’s resignation was formally announced, with Ethan Graves’ resignation as a middle school football coach being made public.
This round of coaching hires is another step in the process of filling all the coaching needs in the district; as Activities Director Chris Lee said he is still looking for coaches in other sports.
“We are fortunate because we are returning all head coaching staff for the high school, and we are fortunate because some of our new teachers were also interested in coaching, which is good for us,” Lee said.
He added, though, that a lot of assistant coaches left and there are coaching needs for the middle school, too.
Some of the positions Lee mentioned that need to be filled are for the middle school football team; he said typically the staff has four coaches on it, and right now, they have a head coach and one returning assistant coach because three coaches resigned after last season.
Lee added that the middle school cross country program is looking for a coach, and there are openings for basketball.
The process Lee and the administration use to weed out the best candidates is fairly standard. Two key components are big factors in the hiring process, however: experience and philosophy.
“Experience is always a good thing for a candidate to have, good experience. If they have an upbeat, positive attitude that is good too,” he said.
Lee added that if a candidate has experience with kids already, that is also a bonus. Otherwise, the candidate’s philosophy is a major consideration.
Lee said he and the administration look to see what the candidate’s personal philosophy is, then they compare it to his and the school’s philosophy.
Ultimately what makes the candidate a good fit, in regards to philosophy, is if their attitudes and ideals for the program align with what the schools expect and how the schools want their image and brand to be presented to others.
Aside from the need to fill some coaching positions, a lot of unknowns are still floating around the sports situation this fall. Schedules have not been released yet, but the varsity football schedule posted online is correct, Lee said.
Lee added that the district is actively looking for coaches to fill the remaining positions, and he encourages anyone with experience, or anyone who knows a person with experience, to contact him and apply.