Saturday, February 05, 2005

Soccer moms take note: County may make it harder for you

The following letter was distributed by a local soccer coach about the value of the large Seven Locks Elementary School field to the community:

In working to get the field permit for my 3rd grade boys soccer team (all Seven Locks students), I was denied my five top choices of days and times to practice at SLES. In my ensuing conversation, the person in charge of parsing out the field spaces told me that SLES is one of the most (if not the most) requested field sites. He was surprised and unhappy (one might say chagrined) to hear of the potential loss of that field space.

Is this another place we could seek support - from community sports teams? I know from personal experience that MSI, BCC baseball and MYLA lacrosse all practice on our field. The counter argument could be that the new school would also provide field space - but I would rebut that it will not be enough. On a typical fall or spring day, SLES has at least three different teams practicing from virtually right after school until dark. Sometimes we share and there can be as many as six teams out there.

[Blogger's note: The architectural and landscape designs for the Kendale "replacement school" show space for only one soccer field, superimposed with a baseball diamond and softball diamond. There is no room for more than one soccer game at a time.]

As a working mom and coach, scheduling a weekly practice further away (even Bells Mill or Wayside) becomes a hardship.

As much as I am not happy about losing SLES, I am even more unhappy about losing the field space on which I have been playing since 1972.

I would also add that given our new property tax assessments, I am a bit frustrated to think that I will pay more and receive less.

Also, as plans proceed forward to building the new school, has the districting been discussed? I wonder if the new school would then draw from other areas - and if so, what input new families would have. Some of my friends who live behind Potomac Community Center have wondered the same thing. This feels like another area of the process that is not transparent enough. Might some of the voices speaking end up districted to another school?