Beth Jackett was named the 2020 Kansas Middle School Girls Coach of the Year. Jackett’s coaching career spans more than twenty years in both high school and middle school volleyball. Her passion for coaching comes naturally. She simply loves volleyball. “I have played since I was twelve years old,” Jackett said, “It was easily my favorite sport to play. It allowed me to excel even though I wasn’t the tallest player.” After injuries unfortunately ended her career as a college volleyball player at MidAmerica Nazarene University Jackett maintained her connection with the sport she loved through coaching.
In 1999 she began coaching in Humboldt, Kansas before coaching high school junior varsity in Chanute. In 2010 she became the head coach for the Royster Middle School 8th Grade volleyball program. “I love coaching middle school students because they’re learning the sport, I can teach the fundamentals and they want to improve.” Beth is a natural teacher, whether in the classroom at Chanute High School or on a volleyball court. According to Coach Jackett there is immense joy in watching middle school athletes translate fundamentals to success in competition, “Watching them get that first bump-set-spike--that’s a success you can celebrate.” Players under her tutelage learn more than simply how to play at the net or the back row. Jackett hopes that each player gains a love for sports in general and an appreciation for contributing to a team. “Sports teach so many life lessons. Those lessons help us learn how to be positive members of a community,” Jackett said.
Family is Jackett’s most important community, “Without the support of my family I couldn’t coach.” The Jackett parents coach six sports collectively; the children both played multiple sports growing up.
Jackett was presented with the award by Chanute High School Activities Director Chris Shields. Jackett was anonymously nominated for this award. She received an email in the spring that she had been selected and then received her plaque a couple of weeks ago.