Some 70 or so Section 1 school district athletics officials this week got a glimpse of a powerful web platform that will enable them to promote their programs and communicate with one another and their communities.
Section 1 is made up of high schools in Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess and Rockland counties.
SportsYou packs a library of skills videos, lesson plans and classroom materials that will boost students’ abilities and their schools’ physical education curricula. Best of all, says SportsYou’s Ed Mangiarotti, it’s free. Mangiarotti, a one-time youth athlete himself and the son of a school athletics official, presented SportsYou at a Section 1 gathering at Southern Westchester BOCES’s Harrison campus June 2.
Laid out in a familiar Facebook format, the platform allows for easy sharing of photos, creation of team or athletics department pages and personal profiles that can be public or semiprivate. Coaches can communicate with players, or team moms can boast of a squad’s latest win. Its calendars can be team- or program-specific and can share assignments or skills videos as easily as the time and location of the next match, game or tournament.
A mobile app is planned by late summer. SportsYou complements rather than replaces existing district athletics sites and other web and mobile tools. Rather than a formal home page, it’s a central location for social media links, celebratory photos, team announcements and assigned tasks. Pre-roll video ads, screened by SportsYou for appropriateness, are the only advertising on the sites.
Jennifer Simmons is sold. Simmons, executive director of Section 1 and director of interscholastic athletics at Southern Westchester BOCES, said SportsYou will give Section 1 the user-friendly web presence it now lacks.
“I think it can take us to a level up from where we are now,” she told the group. Sections 8 and 11 on Long Island have already adopted the program, Simmons’ counterpart, Nina Van Erk said. If Section 1 schools decide to use SportsYou, Simmons said SWBOCES could host training sessions this summer for district staff members.