Usually, when strikes intersect with sports, the replacing discussed focuses on players filling in for others. Not this time in Colorado.
As reported by the Denver Post, the general strike of public school teachers in Denver has left the after-school programs at area schools scrambling to find someone who isn’t a full-time coach to do the work of the coaches who are now on strike.
Indeed, because the strike is limited to Denver Public Schools, an elongated strike would likely necessitate a full-time or part-time teacher to fill in for the men and women who are supposed to be there, but are instead on a picket line.
While that has engendered a sense of sympathy, it has also highlighted the drastic difference between veteran coaches and volunteers who suddenly find themselves in the driver’s seat.
“One, are the (substitute) teachers going to be aware of who is in attendance and who’s not?” Denver North girls volleyball coach Rin Olson told the Post. “And two, during the regular season, I’m the one who is regularly checking to see if my players are in school before they’re playing or participating in practice. I’m not sure the safeguards are in place to make sure that’s taking place, especially if the coach is striking.”
With some of the city’s most respected coaches hitting the picket lines, plenty of replacement coaches may be needed, at least until the strike comes to an end.