By Brent Lieser, Guest Columnist
It is hard to believe that we are in the final month of summer, especially when Mother Nature condensed our spring sports seasons and farmers and gardeners were still planting in late June. As we all know, the calendar does not lie, and we are excited for the upcoming school year and another successful activity season. Before I brief you on the events and activities of the upcoming school year, I want to catch you up on the accomplishments of our students from this spring and summer.
In June, the Royals were the talk of Central Minnesota when it came to high school baseball as Royalton earned its fourth trip to the state tournament. The Lady Royals softball team put together a very competitive season.
Royalton students were involved in many activities this spring and into the summer and quite a few had notable accomplishments. The Royalton YES (Youth Energy Summit) team received the 2014 Lt. Governor’s Red Wagon Award. The Award recognizes groups of young people across Minnesota who work together to increase civic engagement and improve academic achievement.
Royalton BPA (Business Professionals of America) members competed at nationals in Indianapolis in accounting events using Quickbooks. The FFA Chapter had an impressive reorganization under first year adviser Robert Skwira and reinstituted an FFA banquet. And our new band director, Christopher Coppicus, will fill the shoes left behind and build the band program on the successful and rich tradition that was led by longtime director Steven Kunkel.
On Aug. 11, we officially begin our fall sports season, and I am excited that we will have some very competitive teams and individuals. The cross country program has some key returning runners- up on both the girls and boys squads and some depth on the boys team.
The Royals volleyball team was the Subsection 5A West runners-up last year and returns most of their squad as they look to contend in the conference and in Section 5A.
The football team is returning a good portion of their team from last year’s 7-3 finish. The coaching staff believes we have about 60 or more players out for football in grades 9-12 with roughly 25 players that are ready to play varsity football. To put that in perspective, any one of these young men would start or contribute to any team in the conference, making this team the deepest team in our school’s history.
As you can tell, Royalton is an exciting school-community, and it seems to become more and more contagious as the support for our students is growing.
I encourage parents and community members to become engaged in our youth’s education and activities. This is a pivotal time in students’ lives as they learn about themselves and their futures which, essentially, is an investment in our future. Be intentional about making meaningful connections with your students. Connection creates an environment in which lasting growth can occur.
Brent Lieser is the director of the Royalton Schools Activities Department.