Hendricks resigns after one month in charge of dance team, former dance coaches Pearson and Smith brought in to fill vacancy

With previously hired head coach Caitin Hendricks resigning midway through June according to Principal Amy Pressly, former Dazzler coaches Erin Pearson and Andrea Smith were appointed to head Purple Pride, with assistant Emily Young to join them.


Photo courtesy of Amy Pressly

The logo of the new dance team, “Purple Pride.”

Ethan Knauth , Editor in Chief

One month into her term as coach of the Purple Pride Dancers, Caitlin Hendricks resigned due to her significant other accepting a promotion in another state, according to principal Amy Pressly. At this stage in their lives, Pressly said, they couldn’t pass up on the opportunity. 

“She came in and was very upset, cried and said she was going to have to resign,” Pressly said. “They looked at some options of, would there be a way for her to stay for the year, but she felt like that wasn’t very fair to the girls to do it knowing she wasn’t planning on being here next year.” 

Amid the resignation, Pressly said hiring a new coach would prove to be difficult as many would-be high school dance coaches would have a job. With that in mind, Pressly said she decided to turn in-house to two former dance coaches, ELA teacher Erin Pearson and world language teacher Andrea Smith, to once again take over the program.

Despite already having to replace a coach, Pressly said the change might actually benefit the dance program, as they look to rebrand the BVNW dance team. 

“Dance, the whole program across the district, is kind of in flux,” Pressly said. “To be able to bring a couple people back who know how to run a successful program, especially since we’re launching this new program of rebranding ourselves, I thought who better than two coaches I know who did an amazing job when they were our coaches.”

In the new hirees comes 17 years of combined head coach experience and a couple national trips, according to Pressly. Together, the pair will team up with previously hired Emily Young, as the assistant coach, to lead the newly rebranded BVNW dance team. 

The coaching change does not mark the only change for Purple Pride this year. According to Pressly, other changes include switching from historically having dance team as a class during the first hour to now during fifth, forgoing a trip to nationals for a year and stepping away from doing the spring show for the 2019-20 school year. In spite of the changes, Pressly said she hopes the dance team can be more representative of the school. 

Coupled with the former changes, Pressly said the Blue Valley School District’s expectation for next year and beyond is to have all dance program practices and activities outside the school day.

“After this year, the district expectation is to make it that all of our dance programs are outside the day,” Pressly said. “I’m not sure what that will look like. I don’t really know if we have a clear vision of what that is, but we’re going to work together to develop that.”

Regardless, Pressly said she isn’t worried about the early coaching hiccups. 

“I’m just excited that they agreed to do it,” Pressly said. “I think we’re off to a great start.”

Hendricks, Pearson and Smith all declined to comment for this story.

The story has been corrected to say Hendricks’ significant other instead of husband.

We will be updating the story with additional information as we gather it.