Mr. Brusotti and Extracurriculars After the Pandemic


Emily Landolfi, Staff Writer

Although it feels like it has just begun, the 2021 fall sports season is coming to a close and its smooth run is credited to Mr. Brusotti, the Supervisor of Extracurricular Activities at FTHS. As COVID-19 restrictions begin to loosen, students can expect many activities to make a comeback, such as Haunted High School and Battle of the Classes. In this interview, Mr. Brusotti provides clarity to many questions regarding sports, extracurricular activities, and school events in the midst of the pandemic.


Could you go into detail on the criteria that decides whether or not events and activities can happen?

– The primary criteria we are evaluating when making our decisions is safety. We are always asking ourselves, “Can we do this?” and, if so, “Can we do this safely?” To that end, we have made it a point to ensure that the events we are hosting are being held outdoors as we feel that is a much safer option when working with the number of students we anticipate attending the events.


As for extracurriculars, what are the changes that have been made from last school year (2020-2021) to this school year (2021-2022)?

– We are continuing to follow guidance from the various organizations that oversee the high school, so in that regard, nothing has changed. We are taking cues from the Department of Health and with athletics, the Shore Conference and NJSIAA. That said, there are some significant changes from what we did last year. First and foremost, we are permitting in-person meetings for our clubs this year. Last year, we maintained a virtual setting for club meetings but we have been able to return to the traditional method this year. With sports, the biggest change has been that the schedule is not hindered in any way. Last year, we had abbreviated schedules and the fall had an adjusted playoff schedule. This year, we have had a normal and full regular season schedule and are gearing up for a full postseason schedule as well, which means both conference and state tournaments.


With winter approaching, what do you anticipate sports will look like? What are the crowd restrictions going to be like in-doors?

– As I noted earlier, we are taking our guidance from the DOH, Shore Conference and NJSIAA. To date, I have not received any specific information on restrictions pertaining to winter sports. I am hopeful that we will continue the trend of “normalcy” that the fall has established. But, nothing has been set in stone and everything is still “to be determined.”


Speaking of, what will in-door school events look like as the cold weather approaches?

– We are certainly limiting the number of indoor events but we will follow the same guidelines that we have in place now. That means that for any indoor event, guests/spectators will have to remain masked at all times (unless there is eating involved). We are anticipating our Drama Club putting on the Fall Show and spectators will have to remain masked throughout their stay. We will also take steps to ensure that seating meets the requirements to maximize social distancing.


Haunted High School is just around the corner! What can people expect for the setup with COVID restrictions?

– We are very excited to bring back Haunted High School. This is an event that we are going to tweak a little bit to meet the safety guidelines I mentioned earlier. So, this year’s edition of Haunted High School will be a “Track or Treat” theme held around the track and in the football stadium.


With Homecoming having just passed, could you explain why the homecoming dance was not permitted but other events have been (ex. prom in the spring)?

– The Homecoming Dance vs. Prom comparison comes down to the venue. Both proms last year were held at “open air” venues that were able to accommodate our guests at an outdoor setting. With the Homecoming Dance, we did not have the same luxury and therefore decided to promote Homecoming with the pep rally and tailgate exclusively.


What other events can students look forward to this school year?

– So, I already mentioned the Fall Show from Patriot Productions. Along the same lines, we are hopeful to bring back Mr. FTHS as well as the Spring Musical in their traditional months (February and March respectively). We are also looking to host Battle of the Classes in the spring, but move it outdoors. And of course, we look forward to once again hosting our proms as we look towards the end of the school year. That said, this is all contingent on the guidance at the time of the events so any and all of our plans are subject to change.


Thanks to Mr. Brusotti and stay attentive for further announcements!