Flathead High School Director of Activities reflects on unprecedented school year

KALISPELL – KPAX / KAJ and Whitefish Credit Union continue to spotlight unsung heroes of Montana. Each week, we’ll spotlight someone who made a difference in our communities and also give them VIP tickets to this summer’s Under the Big Sky Festival in Whitefish. If you know someone you think we should profile, name them here.

The 2020-21 school year has been a difficult one for students and educators as the COVID-19 pandemic has brought sudden changes to classrooms and school activities.

Flathead High School Director of Activities Bryce Wilson has worked tirelessly throughout the school year to ensure that students and parents can always enjoy extracurricular activities in a safe and fun way.

“Every time you turned the page, there wasn’t a page to know the instructions, so you were writing stuff down and making things up as you go,” said Flathead High School activity director Bryce. Wilson, at MTN News.

With 30 years in the education field, Bryce said he’s never experienced a school year like this.

“Definitely the most difficult just because the general things just weren’t the same,” Wilson said.

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed every school activity and sport, including restrictions on spectators and increased sanitation methods to keep students and staff safe.

Bryce quickly realized that he wasn’t going to be able to please everyone.

“In order for us to continue to organize these events, we need to have everyone masked, we need you to distance yourself socially and we need you to come and support the children; we want you to do it, but it’s in that limited way and we can’t get past that, and so it was definitely a challenge, ”Wilson said.

“It was often a seven-day-a-week job,” Flathead High School principal Michele Paine told MTN News.

Michele said Bryce has been through unprecedented sporting seasons, adjusting playing schedules for each team as the schedules change minute by minute.

“Week to week schedules have changed, you know any season changes will happen, but it has happened all the time!” Paine said.

Bryce often worked quickly behind the scenes, including purchasing special gear for Flathead’s highly competitive speech and debate team, leading virtually the entire season.

“You know, the first tournament we did, we didn’t have the technology we needed, our kids were stopped and frozen right in the middle, so we had to go out and buy things, we had to have our computer look. . to all the computers we use and how do we overcome that, ”Wilson said.

In early March, Bryce came to the rescue again, offering to host the State AA wrestling tournament at Flathead High School on late notice due to a scheduling conflict in Billings.

He said he couldn’t stand idly by and watch the athletes and families miss such a special event they have worked so hard for.

“Coaches, athletes, so grateful you know I have used that word throughout this year, I felt parents, athletes and coaches were grateful that we had seasons and they have was grateful when we were able to organize these events, ”Wilson said.

Michele thinks activity directors have had one of the toughest jobs in school districts this year.

She can’t imagine what this school year would have been like if Bryce hadn’t been in charge.

“Adjust on the fly and they were the first to take criticism when people weren’t happy with the number of attendees or cancellations or postponement to a time when now it doesn’t work for the family, so he had to do a lot of that and we’re very proud to have him here at Flathead High School.

Another big event will take place on June 4th as seniors from Flathead High School cross the stage to graduate from Flathead High School Gymnasium.

Click here if you wish to nominate an unsung hero who made a difference in your community.

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