Shawnee Mission middle schools will have sports programs again next year after a decades-long absence.
After two previous presentations to the board, the Shawnee Mission district asked for a vote of approval to bring back middle school sports Monday night and the program is a go. It will start next school year in the five middle schools with four sports: basketball, volleyball, wrestling and cross-country.
Shawnee Mission Athletic Director Matt Johnson told the board that the estimated cost for the program is $300,000 per year for all five schools. Talks are ongoing with potential contributors who might offset some of the cost. In February he told the board that business sponsorship signs in the gyms is an option under consideration.
The schools will only play other Shawnee Mission schools, with the possible exception of cross-country, he said. The district has worked out insurance programs and officiating logistics. An intramural program will be maintained at each school and the sports programs will be “no cut” with the number of teams expanding at each school to accommodate the students who want to play.