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Gym Class Hero!

By Jameson Bundrick

Most mornings it doesn’t seem like it’s going to be a good day to go to school, but when we pull into the car rider line and see Coach Long in his hunting overalls, our day brightens up. He greets every single student by saying “good morning” as they get out of the car. He makes us laugh during Spirit Week or Halloween with his clothes and he always has the best costumes. He makes us feel less silly for dressing up, too. Coach Long is our PE teacher, but he seems more like a friend who we can talk to than an actual teacher. He always has a listening ear if we need to talk to him about our day or if we are having a hard time at school. One day, my sister was having a not-so-good day, and he stopped in the hallway to say something funny to cheer her up. She only just turned 6 so that made her day. She says he’s like Olaf and gives warm hugs.

He makes sure that everybody gets to participate in whatever PE activity we have. He sometimes has a good dad-joke to share, which makes us laugh, and he is always ready for a high-five. He told my sister during one of her PE classes that there were ghosts in the school and they made spooky noises and then made her jump when he said “boo!” She thought it was super funny. Coach Long is like a mind reader because on the days nobody feels like coming to school, he makes sure we have our favorite activities so everybody looks forward to PE class. He always says “I hope you have a good day” as we leave at the end of his class, which makes us have a good rest of the day.

He is also our archery coach! He takes the time to teach us all about archery, like pulling the strings back and the correct way to anchor your drawstring for the best shot. He gets as excited as us when we make a good shot. We are excited about our new archery team for this year and hope to do really well in the tournaments so we can make him proud.

He puts together our Field Day at the end of the year, which every single person in the school looks forward to. It will have all of our favorite activities from the year like the big parachute, tug of war, and the three-legged race.

Everybody at PGE loves Coach Long!

What he loves best about PGE: I love all of our passengers and the faculty and administration of PGE that I get to go on a ride with every single day.

Students and Staff Quotes

“PE is fun when we get to play and learn. It is fun to do his activities and dodge ball is the best. You are the best Coach Long.”

- Lashon Walker

“Coach Long helps me grow as a kid, but also an athlete. A good coach is a great coach! A good coach can teach a sport, but a great coach can change a life.”

- Anna Cohen

“Dear Coach Long, you are the BEST P.E. teacher EVER! You are so much fun. You plan the most fun games. Your always in a happy mood. You make people happy and never bring people down. You're the best. I love P.E.!

- Jack Hughes

“P.E. at PGE is fun for all of us. Coach is the best man alive.”

- Jericho Heanue

“I like Coach Long because he is so much fun. I also like Coach Long because he has fun ideas”

- Brayden Cureton

“One thing I like about Coach is when he is making sure we have fun and we are safe.”

- Serenity Clark

“Coach Long, you are the best teacher ever and you are very helpful. I love you.”

- RahJae Smith

“It is hard to know where to start when it comes to Coach Joey Long. Coach Long is a gem to not just Pomaria-Garmany Elementary School, but to so many children in the School District. He is a coach, a mentor, a teacher, and a model to kids and adults alike. His special trait includes looking for ways to help without being asked or recognized. Our PGE students and staff love Coach Long because of his silly costumes, his big laugh, and his love for everything he does. No one deserves to be recognized more as a hometown hero than our very own Coach!”

- Lindsey Folk, Principal of Pomaria-Garmany Elementary School


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