The Kirkwood Call

Q&A: Three KHS coaches and sexual harassment

Maddie Hawes, web editor

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TKC held a roundtable interview with four KHS coaches about the sexual harassment climate they see at KHS.

Craig Dickinson, health teacher and boys’ wrestling coach

Gina Woodard, health teacher and girls’ cross country coach

Lisa Hellmich, history teacher and girls’ volleyball coach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TKC: From a health teacher’s perspective, how have you changed your topics in class along with the national events and awareness to the topic of sexual assault and harassment?

Dickinson: “When we get into our sexual health unit we definitely emphasize the importance of consent and legally what that looks like and how you can’t be drunk and legally give consent to sex even if you say ‘yes.’”

 

 

Woodard: “And I do a [lesson] with body language because [students] need to be able to pick up on those social cues. And the gap between what parents [are telling kids] and [what kids are] figuring out [is an issue.] Kids are set up to get really bad information and then play this role that they think they’re supposed to play because they don’t know anything else.”

 

TKC: Do you know when KSD Health teachers start talking about consent to their students?

 

Dickinson: “[The middle school health/P.E. teachers] only get a few weeks of health [class] and then they have to go back to [teaching] P.E. so they just pick units that they can get through. I do not think that they’re having those conversations unless a kid’s having a private conversation on the side, but not as part of the lesson.”

 

Hellmich: “And [for a coach,] every single player needs a different lesson than the other one and just individualizing that and [meeting] their needs, it’s just overwhelming sometimes.”

 

TKC: Why is it important for students to be aware of sexual harassment and assault today?

 

Dickinson: “We talk about similar things [in health class] with binge drinking and say: ‘Listen, you have to be careful. It’s not right that you have to be careful, but you have to be careful. Don’t put yourself in situations where you’re alone with someone after drinking, if you’ve been drinking, because now it’s [their] word against yours, and you don’t want to be in that situation. You shouldn’t have to lock your doors when you leave your house, but you do.” 

About the Writer
Maddie Hawes, associate editor

Interests: Writing and reporting for the Kirkwood Call, getting my daily jog between SJ and the French Department, singing and acting and jamming to Brock...

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Q&A: Three KHS coaches and sexual harassment