Student athletes distraught by 2021-2022 club meeting mandate

Anna Knepley, Co Editor-in-Chief

As a student athlete, balancing time after school for practice, homework, family, and sleep is tricky. Add in club meetings at the exact same time and students are overwhelmed. Student athletes are forced to choose between attending a club meeting or going to their sports practice. Due to the requirements for being a member of both a sports team and a club, students must pick one.  

Hereford offers a variety of clubs and extracurricular activities, and participation is encouraged. 

Liam McCue (‘24) runs cross country for the school and didn’t get to join any clubs this school year because of the meeting times. 

“I wanted to do chess club,” McCue said. “I probably would have done another club if I had the chance to.” 

There’s a lot of options that I want to try but can’t.

— Emily Larsen ('25)

Emily Larsen (‘25) deals with a similar situation, adding that she feels stressed trying to join both clubs and sports. 

“There’s a lot of options that I want to try but can’t [due to sports practices and games],” Larsen said.

Some coaches are fine with players missing practices, but are others employing unspoken consequences? Many upperclassmen who have been members of certain clubs or honor societies in the past are also struggling to make it work. 

“This year I haven’t been able to participate as much as my role in a certain club demands me to because I can’t be there after school most of the time,” Leah Jones (‘22) said. “I think anyone who participates in a sport can’t make it to clubs most of the time.”  

In past school years, clubs and extracurricular activities met during enrichment. Student athletes were able to participate in multiple clubs and still attend full after-school practices. Having club meetings during enrichment also allowed for underclassmen, most of whom rely on transportation from the school system to and from school, to participate.  

Some clubs and honor societies have tried to accommodate everyone by changing meeting times to before school or offering a virtual recap of what happened at the after-school meetings. Although this seems to be a decent solution, underclassmen still would not have a way to be at school as early as needed.  

“I put that in the stipulation when they applied, that we’d be meeting in the morning,” Tammy Mundie, Mu Alpha Theta sponsor, said. “I imagine that those students with conflicts didn’t apply.” 

Advisory Enrichment, which will allow clubs to meet one designated day per month, begins Nov. 19.  

“The advisory enrichment works on paper, but it doesn’t work if you are in more than one club,” Mikey Briggs (‘23) said.  

All students deserve the chance to help with service projects, pursue interests with likeminded people, and show their dedication to bettering the community on college and job applications through clubs and extracurriculars. Meetings should be able to run during enrichment any day of the week in order to accommodate students involved in other activities.  

Even though getting academic assistance from teachers during enrichment can be helpful, the move of club meetings after school only extends student athletes’ days.