School split opens slots for coaches in DeSoto
The split-up of the DeSoto School District's two high schools left DeSoto High with 16 returning teachers and two coaches.
Debbie Lynn, DeSoto High's new principal, took her job with the responsibility of hiring 15 new teachers and filling 32 coaching positions.
"I had some very tough shoes to fill Mill Valley (High School) has wonderful coaches and teachers," Lynn said.
Lynn has filled most of the coaching positions, and volleyball is the only sport without a head coach.
Most of the coaches and sponsors will be part of DeSoto's teaching staff, Lynn said, stressing that her goal was to hire quality teachers and not just coaches.
"Kids have to be their No. 1 priority," Lynn said. "We have now hired a staff that is truly dedicated to the needs and traditions of DeSoto High School."
Brad Scott, who has eight years of teaching experience, will teach English, broadcast journalism and newspaper. He also is the school's head football coach, golf coach and weight room supervisor.
"I've had a background in all of it just not all of it at once," Scott said.
Scott coached football, golf, baseball and basketball at Olathe South High School, but said he has no broadcast or communications experience. He has a degree in English from Baker University.
The extended responsibility Scott has inside and outside of the classroom is common in education, Lynn said.
"It's very difficult to find a teacher to fit all of these positions," she said. "The English department has so many courses that we're looking at a tremendous amount of electives.
"The only way we can offer these positions is to find teachers that are diversified."
Scott said he would be taking classes next summer to add a certification in journalism to his resume. He said he would be responsible for the writing aspect of the Green Pride student newspaper, and Tim Mispagel, art teacher and assistant baseball coach, will handle the paper's production.
Finding someone with the desire to be certified exemplifies a great teacher, Lynn said. Teacher stress, however, is something she said she would be watching.
"I'm concerned about the stress level for all of the coaches and teachers here because they're all extremely dedicated," she said.
Scott said his position would require extreme organization and time management. He said the break between football and golf seasons and responsible students are two things that will work in his favor.
"The nice thing I find out here is the great kids," he said.
Along with good students, Scott said, the school also has an excellent teaching staff. Teachers, he said, are eager to contribute.
"We're not compensated on any level that gives you what you're worth," he said. "What you have is a lot of people doing it for the kids and not the pay."