Camelot of South Shore’s Girl Track Team Competes in State Sectionals
It’s been a year of ‘firsts’ for Camelot’s Excel Academy of South Shore in Chicago. Earlier this year, the school introduced its first-ever barbering program, and now, they’ve formed a track and field team with hopes of competing at the national level.
“This was the first time we had a track team,” said Tirrell Taylor, director of student services for South Shore. “Our team consisted of two girls and two boys. The competitions were split with the girls’ teams and boys’ teams battling at different locations. The state sectionals under the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) include teams from all over the state to determine who qualifies for the finals.”
IHSA’s purpose is to provide leadership for the development, supervision, and promotion of good sportsmanship in interscholastic competition and other activities. Participation in such activities offers eligible students experiences in an educational setting which provide enrichment to the educational experience.
Excel Academy of South Shore is located in Chicago and is an accelerated school of choice for students who are 15-21 years old and are behind in their studies. The program offers an extended day with teacher-led course instruction, where students can earn up to 5 credits per semester and 10 credits per year. This allows students to graduate in 2.5 years or less. Excel Academy is dedicated to creating a challenging, academically rigorous, and safe environment for all students.
Excel Academy of South Shore also plans to celebrate many more ‘firsts’ in the upcoming school year by offering expanded vocational and athletic programming. The school encourages students to engage in activities that interest them by offering programs and courses which mirror the interests of their students. If a group of students is interested in a particular sport or career, the school gives them the support, flexibility, and resources to harness that interest. That’s how the track team was formed this year – by a sincere interest from students.
Taylor said that young people who compete on athletic teams not only build good character but learn leadership skills, accountability, and how to work as a team; being helpful and supportive of one another.
Serenity has always been an honor roll student, and Loryn is also doing well academically. But since competing in the state sectionals, Taylor said both of them have come out of their shells.
“Serenity and Loryn are both blossoming. It’s wonderful to see them becoming active leaders in the school. We want our students to have the same high school experience that they would have at a traditional public school, and being able to compete in athletic competitions is part of that,” Taylor said. “It’s not only about competing and learning the fundamentals of sports, but it’s also about receiving a quality education. We don’t want our students to just come to school, attend classes, and then go home. We want them to experience a well-rounded education. Participating in athletics contributes to this experience and also opens the opportunity to earn college scholarships, as well as providing health and fitness benefits.”
Related Article: Excel Academy South Shore Launches Barbering Program