Administration describes how they make decisions best for BHS and it’s student athletes.
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A job in school administration is stressful and demanding, waking up earlier than the sun and tying a tie that doesn’t come off until 11 o’clock on some nights is a lifestyle some people would take displeasure to.
Along with long hours came tough decisions and Biddeford High School’s very own athletic director Dennis Walton knows what it’s like to make athletic decisions not everyone agrees with.
“Sometimes it’s very difficult because you have two very strong compelling sides,” said Walton. “The best way to describe it is some of it is black and white and some is a huge gray area and you still have to fish through it and make a decision. A great example from a few years ago was when we were trying to determine whether or not we were going to continue to have Thornton Academy wrestlers with Biddeford. Our team was growing, and so there became a population of people that said let TA do their own thing we have our own Biddeford team, and there’s no need for them to be there. Then there was the other side of people saying there is no reason they can’t come here.”
Principal Jeremie Sirois believes in doing what’s best for BHS student athletes.
“In any aspect of education, there could be issues that arise,” said Sirois. “Parents always want what is best for their children, and that is commendable. Issues arise when families and schools don’t see things the same way with a particular concern. We work through it and try to work together. We [adminstration] handle these challenges the way we would any situation. Listen, investigate, and try and do what we believe to be best.”
Every idea and opinion brought to BHS administration is analyzed and discussed, but not all get put into action.
“People come to us [administration] with concerns, and people will also come to us thinking this and this is a problem, but as an administrator you might not always agree,” said Walton. “People say ‘well we brought this to the administrators and they didn’t do anything’, but it could have been that we didn’t agree.”
Making decisions can be tough on administration, but Walton’s point of view keeps him in a positive mindset.
“I go home everyday whether it’s a good day or it’s not such a good day and I say anything I did today or any decisions I made today, I truly believe was in the best interest of our school and of our student athletes and our community,” said Walton. “If you can go home everyday and say that, it’s sort of easier to brush off the negative parts.”
Sirois believes in looking at the big picture when it comes to making decisions regarding the students of BHS.
“My job is to always make decisions that I see are best for the school as a whole,” said Sirois. “I try to look at the big picture.”
Biddeford Middle School athletic director and BHS Social studies teacher Karl Lebreux sees a difference in the decisions of a high school and middle school athletic director.
“With high school there are a lot more challenges,” said Lebreux. “Middle school athletic directors have to make a lot more small decisions high school athletic directors have less small decisions but there are more serious big decisions.”
Making an athletic decision that the whole community of Biddeford agrees upon can be a struggle, but Walton understands a choice needs to be made.
“The hardest part is that I have to make a decision, and I know not everyone is going to like it,” said Walton. “I have to make a decision that I think is the right thing to do, however I value and listen to all parties and all opinions that come across my desk.”
Walton is committed to BHS athletics just as much as the student athletes are BHS is the team he will always play in favor of.
“I think in any profession you have your days when you ask yourself ‘is this really something I want to do’, as the athletic director those days are very far and few between,” Walton said. “I love what I do I have been doing this for ten years. I taught at Biddeford High School, I graduated from Biddeford High School, I was born in Biddeford I love what I do and making decisions is just part of the job.”