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Grade 7 students at Princess Alexandra School take part in hockey phys-ed pilot program

Students from Princess Alexandra School work on proper stance during a hockey phys-ed class at the Aurora Ford Arena on Jan. 12. Photo courtesy of Town of Hay River

Phys-ed class is always a favourite part of any student’s day when they’re in school as it breaks up the day.

For some students at Princess Alexandra School, they got to spend some time playing hockey at the Aurora Ford Arena courtesy of the Town of Hay River.

The Grade 7 class of Jason Morrissey got the chance to take part in a brand new initiative which saw the students hit the ice for a skills session. The first class happened on Jan. 12 with students working on proper stance, shooting and stickhandling.

Courtney Fraser, the town’s recreation programming supervisor, said the program was first developed in spring of 2023 in collaboration with Morrissey.

“Princess Alexandra School often brings their classes skating on the Aurora Ford Arena ice surface but Jason wanted to give kids the additional opportunity to try hockey,” she said. “The equipment was purchased and provided by Princess Alexandra School for students who didn’t have equipment of their own.”

Students moved from one station to another to work on their skills with players from Hay River Minor Hockey on hand to help out at each one, added Fraser.

She also said the skill level was very mixed.

“Some students (had) no experience playing hockey and/or minimal skating experience and others (had) years of experience playing hockey,” she said. “All students put in a great effort and seemed to enjoy themselves, regardless of their personal skill level.”

As of now, Fraser said this is a pilot program with the one class from the school and the hope is to be able to expand to additional grades at the school.

It’s also just at Princess Alexandra for the time being, she added.

“The town has not yet been approached by any other schools in the area regarding this program or anything similar,” she said.