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The LEAP Student Blog

"LEAP’s New Members and Transition to Zoom", by Billy Simpkin, Kiona-Benton HS

Billy Simpkin
Kiona-Benton High School, Class of 2021

My name is Billy Simpkin, and this is my second year being on the LEAP Committee team with WIAA. This has been an interesting and difficult year because of COVID, but our Committee and advisors have been doing their best to make this year work as efficient as possible! Instead of meeting in person at WIAA headquarters, we’ve had to hold Zoom meetings and meet that way, which is much different than the usual meetings we hold. At the beginning of this year, WIAA LEAP held their first Zoom meeting ever, but this was due to poor weather. No one knew that after that first Zoom meeting, every meeting that followed would have to be done through Zoom, and we would not meet in person. 

This year the previous LEAP seniors left the Committee when they graduated high school, so we recruited 8 new members to the Committee! I’d like to congratulate the new members of the team, although it will be an interesting year because we (most likely) won’t get to meet any of the new members except through the now normal Zoom meetings. From the meetings we’ve had so far, I have enjoyed meeting and getting to know some of the new members through the meetings. Our advisors have helped us meet and get to know the new members through small games we play, such as two truths and a lie. Although I’ve met the new members, I’m excited to get to know them a lot more through our current meetings and hopefully get to meet them in person towards the end of the year!

My school has been very different from the usual regarding sports and classes. For the beginning of the school year, my school began Zoom classes, and to my knowledge, don’t plan on having high school students return to in-person class because they want highs school students to have a simple year, not having to worry about going to in-person classes and then having to shut down then reopen. So to avoid this confusion, they’ve decided to stay online until it’s much safer to reopen (to my knowledge at the moment).  As far as sports go, Cross Country and Track are not going to start until late in winter, towards the end of February which is extremely abnormal for Cross Country considering it’s a fall sport. Basketball may start in late December, but the numbers for COVID need to drop more for us to begin sports in December.

Our school has started some football practice, but most of the time you have to be wearing a mask so that makes it very hard to practice as usual. Although they’re practicing, football players are told that they may not have any competition for a few months, because most schools around our area are waiting longer to start high-risk sports until the numbers of COVID cases decline.  

All in all, this year so far has been pretty good. We made a smooth transition to Zoom calls, and the Zoom calls do make it easier for all of the group to be there, as it’s much more accessible and less timely. The downside to these virtual meetings however is not being able to meet the current and new members in person. But we’re doing what we can with what we have, and doing our best to get the student voice to the WIAA board and expressing the feelings and voices of our fellow peers, making sure the student’s voice is being heard.

November 2020

11/17/2020 "LEAP’s New Members and Transition to Zoom", by Billy Simpkin, Kiona-Benton HS

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