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Technicality Nixes High Schools' Gymnastics Co-Op Plan

Paul Steinbach

Prior Lake (Minn.) High School technically has an active co-op relationship with and Jordan High School in gymnastics, though no Jordan gymnast has ever competed for Prior Lake.

That technicality is enough to tank a unanimously approved gymnastics co-op between Prior Lake and Shakopee High School, according to a report on swnewsmedia.com.

The Shakopee School Board unanimously approved the pursuit of a co-op gymnastics team with Prior Lake at its Sept. 23 school board meeting, but on Oct. 11, Prior Lake Athletic Director Russel Reetz announced it would not be able to move forward with the co-op due to the technicality. New Minnesota State High School League guidelines led Reetz to believe Prior Lake’s co-op with Jordan had dissolved in 2017, without realizing the co-ops only dissolved if they involved three or more schools.

“I reached out to the Athletic Director at Jordan Public Schools to let him know our co-ops were still active,” Reetz said in a letter to the school board. “They have a gymnast interested in joining our team for the 2019-20 season. I feel we need to honor the current co-op with Jordan.”

As reported by swnewsmedia.com, Prior Lake can only enter into a co-op with one school per sport.

Shakopee Athletic Director Matt Hanson, who proposed the idea, said three families approached him this summer to ask about gymnastics programs in Shakopee, which currently does not offer a program through the school.

Hanson said since adding a gymnastics program to the district would be a significant financial cost, and there aren’t enough gymnasts in Shakopee to create a team even if the district wanted to, the next best option would be to enter into a co-op.

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