Olympic Archery Training In Alabama Middle School

The State Department of Education and the Conservation Department’s Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries developed a partnership to conduct a pilot program similar to Kentucky’s “National Archery in the Schools Program.”  Alabama’s pilot program includes two schools from each of the eight State Board of Education districts.  Information regarding Alabama’s pilot program is available at www.dcnr.state.al.us/agfd/archery.html.  The Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries provided all of the necessary equipment to implement the program in 16 public middle schools.

Twenty-one middle school physical education teachers became certified archery instructors on March 1, 2003, in Montgomery, Alabama.  The following is a list of pilot school participants and teachers that attended the workshop on March 1: 

Ronald Ashley Sr. Floyd Middle School                            Montgomery

Pam Bogle                        Brookhaven Middle School                  Decatur

Stephanie Bolling               Jemison Middle School             Jemison

Benny Eaves                     Simmons Middle School                       Hoover

Jerrill Fuller                       Eclectic Middle School             Eclectic

Joyce Girodo                    Brookhaven Middle School                  Decatur

Trent Hill                           Hubbertville School                              Winfield

William Hill                        Phillips Prep School                              Mobile

Clayton Holt                      Floyd Middle School                            Montgomery

Zechariah Humphrey         Green Acres Middle School                  Bessemer

Forrest Lee                       Charles Henderson Middle School        Troy

Sandra Mitchell                 Adair School                                        Clanton

Johnny Page                      Curry Middle School                            Nauvoo

Kay Scott                         Riverton Middle School                        Hazel Green

Matt Stephens                   Ider School                                          Ft. Payne

Samuel Teel                      Alexander City Middle School  Alexander City

Rhetta Tucker                   Hubbertville School                              Eldridge

Calvin Turnipseed  Phillips Prep School                              Mobile

Jackie Ward                      Hewitt-Trussville Middle School           Trussville

Eric Woodley                    Curry Middle School                            Jasper

Tommy Wright Sr. Andalusia Middle School                      Andalusia

The 12-hour training program was presented by the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries archery instructors with assistance from Rod White a two-time Olympic archery medalist.

During the training, physical education teachers learn about archery history, safety, shooting form, and competition.  The teachers learn, for example, that the National Safety Council rates target archery safer than football, baseball, basketball, tennis, soccer and even ping-pong.

To qualify for the program, each school must agree to utilize a unit of study called, “Archery: On Target for Life.”  The school must also send its physical education teachers to a 12-hour National Archery Association instructor-training course.  Each participating school also agrees to purchase a standard set of modern archery equipment designed for safety, universal fit, and ease of use.  The equipment kit retails for $4,800 but thanks to support from several manufacturers within the archery industry, it can be purchased from Brennan Industries for $2,410.50.  Brennan Industries manufactures the bow used in the “Archery in Schools Program.” 

Commissioner Barnett Lawley of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources stated, “I am excited about this partnership between the State Department of Education and the Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries.  This is an opportunity to positively influence thousands of young Alabamians and provide them with the ingredients to become involved in a life skill that has no barriers.  Unlike many school activities, students of all sizes can easily be involved in archery.” 

For more information please contact Ray Metzler of the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries at 1-800-245-2740.  

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