BEAUFORT — St. Peter School has 24 students participating in a new archery program made possible by a $5,000 grant from the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.
Archery in the Schools is a team effort between the state departments of education and wildlife and archery equipment manufacturers. Their goal is to promote physical education and the sport of archery.
The program is available to all South Carolina students in grades 4-12 and teaches the basics of Junior Olympic archery.
A teacher, administrator or affiliated staff member must take the DNR’s eight-hour Basic Archery Instructor training program to become certified to work with children.
DNR representatives traveled to Beaufort to provide training for the St. Peter coaches, including Lori and Douglas Massalon, Matthew Hurtt, Tom Cutie and Claire Coffman.
Left- and right-handed bows, a bow rack system, arrows, a safety net made out of Kevlar to block stray arrows, targets and a repair kit were all provided.
The program incorporates performance strategies and discipline, promotes students’ self-confidence and focus, and correlates with the S.C. Physical Education Assessment Program for Middle and High Schools, Douglas Massalon said.
The St. Peter’s co-ed team spent their first day in the classroom learning the basics of archery and respect for the sport. Once on the school grounds, youth walked to a safety line, took aim, and released the arrows.
Massalon hopes to raise money for archery team uniforms as St. Peter joins competitions and tournaments across the state. He plans to present new fundraising ideas to the school’s Parent Teacher Organization and Father Timothy D. Tebalt, pastor of St. Peter Church.
The program provides a unique mix of sportsmanship, mental concentration and self-improvement.
St. Peter is one of a handful of parochial schools currently participating in the statewide program. Grants are available to eligible schools.
“It’s pretty cool,” Massalon said in an interview with The Miscellany.
For more information visit www.dnr.sc.gov/hunting/archery.