As a member of the 2003 Normal Community West High School pom squad, I was concerned about the way Rebecca Franks was portrayed in the Feb. 3 article, ("Pom squad dancers quit over coach, Page XXX)." Although I was not a witness to her coaching this year, I do know the impact she had on our squad when we placed fourth in the state competition. Coach Franks often disciplined us, but also met that discipline with an equal amount of encouragement. At times, the squad would disagree with her coaching style, but our captains were able to intercede with positive results.
I felt that the article was biased, and the readers were not made aware of the fact that Coach Franks is a compassionate and trustworthy individual. I can think of several times where she proved to be more than just a coach. She has a great love for dance and always has the best intentions for her squad.
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I realize that the squad felt that they had no other option than quitting, but it seems a little selfish from an outside perspective. These 15 girls were chosen to be members of a team that has developed a reputation of being strong leaders and dedicated dancers. Young girls in this community look forward to the Jr. Poms clinic every year, and it saddens me that this year they were overlooked due to a conflict between a squad and their coach. I realize that there are always two sides to every story, but people should really think of the big picture and everyone involved when making such a large statement, as in this case.
Even though I will always have a special place in my heart for the NCWHS poms, I have the utmost respect for Rebecca Franks as a person and as a coach.