Athletic programs in school teach students many important life skills, including balance, time management and hard work. The Pulaski County Special School District and its feeder schools are proud of the many accomplishments of its students athletes and athletic programs.
Executive Director of Communications Jessica Duff recently sat down with the PCSSD feeder athletic directors to find out what they believe it takes for student athletes to be successful.
Maumelle Feeder Athletic Director, Kirk Horton: “In my opinion, success can come to any student athlete who wants it. Success just may look different from one athlete to another. Some athletes may have the physical gifts to go pro and must work on that path. Other athletes may find success in sports by building relationships with teammates and coaches. The greatest thing about sports is that there can be a fit for everyone.”
Mills Feeder Athletic Director, Raymond Cooper: “Student athletes today are students FIRST. The days of athletes getting passed along and not performing academically are long gone. The training and the rigor it takes to be successful has increased drastically. Sports have become year-round. There is no more offseason. Football has 7-on-7. Basketball has AAU. Baseball and soccer have travel teams. Even when not playing on teams, athletes have personal trainers. High-end athletes are pressured to choose a sport due to the time demands and conflicting schedules.”
Robinson Feeder Athletic Director, Todd Eskola: “For a student-athlete to be successful in today’s society, he or she must not be afraid to compete. Don’t expect a handout or something to be given, but work hard to earn everything you want to achieve. Student-athletes who embrace competition and are able to handle adversity are not only the most successful on the field, but also the most successful in life!”
Sylvan Hills Feeder Athletic Director, Denny Tipton: “I think time management is very important. One has to be able to balance school work with the demands of being an athlete.”
The Pulaski County Special School District Athletic Department provides student-athletes the opportunity for involvement on a variety of athletic teams. While striving for excellence, the athletic programs serve as an extension of the school district’s academic goals, supporting success in the classroom as well as on the field. The Pulaski County Special School District Athletic programs aim to instill loyalty, teamwork and leadership while maintaining honesty and integrity in every student athlete.
First, it is important that children have the foundation to love learning and to learn how to learn. Most importantly, they need to know how they - as unique individuals - learn best. When they are armed with those abilities, success is always within reach.