Cool school: Baker High School
MOBILE, Ala. (WPMI) —
This week Local15 Today highlighted Baker High School as our Cool School of the Week! Students are getting experience on the sidelines not only as players, but also as trainers! And students are getting just as comfortable in front of the camera as Local15’s Katie Herrera! Plus, the Baker band and cheerleaders gave us a fantastic live performance!
During a Baker football game, the football players may get the spotlight. But there’s another group of students making sure they get the chance to shine.
“I’ve taped ankles, done bandaids, shoulder spikers, crutches,” explained Patrick Sanders, a senior. “They’re like, ‘Wow Pat! I didn’t know you knew how to do that!’ They’re shocked, and it makes me feel good to know that I can give them the help that they need.”
Sanders gave up the helmet and pads to help his teammates in a different way – as an athletic trainer.
“I knew that this was my passion, this is what I wanted to do,” added Sanders.
Sports Medicine is now an entire program sophomores through seniors at Baker.
“Injury evaluations, we’re doing that right now. We’re doing a shoulder evaluation set. We do an unconscious athlete and how to treat them. We do spine boarding and moving an athlete. Anything that you’d see on the sidelines on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon is stuff we try to introduce to them throughout the class,” said Daniel Kertis, the Sports Medicine teacher.
With 13 years as an athletic trainer under his belt, Kertis is passing along his passion. Many of the students are athletes now, who want to stay close to the sports they love, once their days of playing are done. But Kertis makes sure they realize it’s not always pretty.
“I kind of joke that if you don’t like feet, probably not the career for you. Because you’re going to be dealing with them on a daily basis, and you’re going to be touching other people’s feet,” joked Kertis.
His students are on the sidelines for every Baker sport, and their role is just as important as the ones scoring the points.
“Coaches tell us every day, if we can keep them healthy and keep them on the field, it helps them out a lot,” added Kertis.
Kertis just started the Sports Medicine program two years ago. He hopes to eventually get the students college credit, rotations at local clinics, and assisting with community athletic events.
Baker High School has become known over the years for the BH1 News Team. But in the last few years, the program has turned into an incredible production house.
“They were working on one computer with one camera, and put together one show once a month. Now we have four cameras, about four computers, and we’re putting together weekly broadcasts, along with live athletic events, a YouTube channel, Twitter page, we’re constantly producing content,” explained Justin Tolbert, the BH1 Productions teacher.
BH1 is now producing live-stream webcasts of Baker sports, complete with student commentators.
“We broadcast football, volleyball, basketball, soccer, and this year we’re going to do softball,” said Tolbert.
They’re also leaders in film-making, taking home several trophies at last year’s county-wide film festival.
Even Mobile County District Attorney Ashley Rich has taken notice of the talent. Rich personally asked BH1 to produce a Bully Blocker PSA that has run on local television.
“The best part is when you finish it, and then you have to watch it. But then you’re actually proud of yourself!” explained BH1 senior Addison Genard.
Students like Genard are learning that whether you are in front of the camera or are the one holding the camera, it’s a team effort on and off the air.
“I think we all have a passion for it now. So we want to be in front of a computer, in front of a camera, shooting, editing, all the time. Because we know that we can achieve something amazing,” added Genard.