from Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine
by Jess Daddio
Though private schools like Miller and Asheville have been at the frontlines of providing adventure alternatives to traditional team sports, it’s clear the tide is changing. Within the past decade, charter and public schools nationwide have been adopting their own programs, from clubs and competitive teams to experiential academic offerings.
For an industry criticized as being accessible only to the white, middle and upper-middle class, the explosion of outdoor opportunities for public school youth couldn’t be more welcome. The widespread success of the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) in particular has skyrocketed the movement—just last year, every public high school in Virginia’s Albemarle County started NICA teams.
That’s something Monticello High School’s head coach Sam Lindblom never could have anticipated just three years ago, when he launched Albemarle County’s first public high school NICA team.