BENNINGTON -- Mount Anthony Union High School’s annual Athletics and Activities Report, presented to the school board Monday, shows continued achievement in the classroom by students who participate in extracurricular activities.
Similar to recent years, a significantly higher percentage of students playing sports or participating in clubs made the honor roll last school year. In total, 63 percent of the 438 activity slots that were filled (which includes the same students multiple times if they participated in multiple activities) made honor roll, and 58 percent of the 770 athletic slots were filled by honor roll students.
Comparatively, about 40 percent of the entire student body make honor roll each year.
Athletes on honor roll
For the past 11 years, more than 50 percent of student athletes have made honor roll, which is up significantly from 38 percent when Athletics and Activities Director Tim Brown began collecting data in 1990.
The report shows participation in high school sports increased last year from 720 to 757, which again counts students multiple times if they participated in multiple sports. Enrollment in clubs saw an opposite trend, decreasing from 536 students to 452.
Brown said the decrease in club participation is likely because some clubs did not run last school year. The teachers’ strike last fall and turnover of some teacher advisers may have also negatively impacted participation rates, he told the board.
The report also shows a slight increase in paid attendance at high school sporting events -- up a few hundred to 16,876. With the higher attendance was also increased revenue from ticket sales, up to $48,600. Sports that charge entrance fees include football, girls and boys soccer, girls and boys basketball, and wrestling. Football brought in the most revenue at $11,900.
In addition to figures from the 2011-12 school year including team records, the state championship teams and costs to run each program, the report includes a list of goals and expectations for the upcoming school year that Brown called a "wish list."
Among other goals is the organization of a committee to look at long-range plans for Spinelli Field. Two items the committee may consider are replacing bleachers that have been at the field since the school was built about 45 years ago and replacing the grass with artificial turf. Both items involve significant cost, but they would also bring significant benefits, Brown said.
Brown said artificial turf would allow for "five times" as much activity on Spinelli Field, including games for additional sports teams and even practices for many teams that could be staggered, beginning after school and finishing in the early evening under the lights. Spinelli is currently unavailable to spring teams to allow the grass time to recover from fall football and soccer seasons.
In addition to high school sports, a turf field would allow other town organizations to use the field more, including the semi-pro football team Southern Vermont Storm, Brown said.
The report may be viewed in its entirety at www.maupatriots.com
Contact Dawson Raspuzzi at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow on Twitter @DawsonRaspuzzi