what we are · who we are
What We Are
The Northside Falcons is a Christian Homeschool Baseball Program based in Conroe, Texas. It was formed in 2004 to address and fulfill the desire of homeschool boys in the North Houston / Montgomery County, Texas area to participate in High School and Junior High level competitive baseball activities, including training programs, camps, tryouts and select team competition. It was founded by Fred Watt and is both an athletic organization and a fellowship of sorts to homeschool boys in the area. It is completely non-denominational and although it provides many opportunities for witnessing, ministry and character development, it is not a replacement for the church or the family, nor a platform for any specific form of evangelism. In short, without sacrificing diligence or determination (the desire to win), we place a strong emphasis on supporting the spiritual growth of our players and all those who come in contact with our program. Ultimately, we have to answer to a higher authority than the umpire, and we strive to keep our baseball priorities in line with our responsibilities as followers of Jesus Christ.
- Christian - The Falcons was founded by Christians to serve Christian homeschoolers in the North Houston / Montgomery County area (though players outside that area may participate). It is a competitive baseball program balanced by Christian principles and the recognition of both higher priorities and higher authority. We insist on conduct that is consistent with Christian standards of morality and dress. Our coaches and other leaders are Christians who have both the abilities and the desire to incorporate Christian character development within the context of competitive baseball. Although we do not require a theological test of our players or parents in order for them to participate, we do hold ourselves to a standard that is best represented by our statement of faith, which you can read here. In short, we rely on our code of conduct and enforcement provisions to assure the kind of environment where Christian parents are comfortable allowing their boys to participate. If your previous baseball experience has been with Little League, Pony League or public school, you will quickly discover a unique and wonderful difference with the Northside Falcons. As you come to know the other players, parents and coaches, you will welcome the refreshing experience that is Christian homeschool baseball.
- Homeschool - The Falcons was established for homeschool boys. The entire purpose of the program is to provide the level of baseball that homeschoolers have until recently missed in choosing to school at home rather than going to public or private school. Of course, the wide range of homeschooling methods can make it difficult to define. According to the Homeschool World Series Association (HWSA):
“Homeschooling” is defined to mean that a student’s education is parent-directed. As such, the parents shall be involved in their child’s education by assuming the role of principal or headmaster, thereby (1) setting the date and requirements for high school graduation; (2) selecting and approving course materials and study schedules; and (3) selecting tutors, correspondence courses, videos, computer courses and similar resources for their child’s education.
HWSA is the governing body for the Homeschool World Series, held annually around the beginning of May. (More information regarding HWSA's definition of homeschooling, including "exceptions" and further explanation, is available on the HWSA website).
- Baseball - Our focus is baseball, pure and simple. Okay, so it's not always so simple. But it's not football and it never will be. It won't be cheerleading. Or gymnastics. Or Tae-Kwon-Do or Awanas or Robotics or swimming or 4-H or tutorials or any of the thousands of other activities that are available to homeschoolers and provided by individuals and organizations that are imminently more qualified to do so than we are. At some point, there may be room for a girls softball team as the sport is indeed similar and the Homeschool World Series Association covers that sport as well. But there are no immediate plans for that activity and it's not on our priority list. Our priority is baseball. If you want to know where we're headed, just look at where we are and imagine it getting bigger and better. Think diamonds and you'll be right on track. Green and brown diamonds, that is.
- Program - The Falcons is a comprehensive baseball program. Our "year-round" strategy covers a wide variety of baseball-related activity, including beginner classes about baseball, strength training and conditioning programs, private and group lessons, baseball camps, team tryouts and season play, tournaments, the Homeschool World Series and more. We also have a secondary goal of helping those players who are interested in taking their baseball careers further to achieve their maximum playing potentials and get in the best position possible for obtaining college scholarships and/or professional interest. On the other hand, our year-round approach does not require year-long participation or long-term commitment. Though we'd certainly like to see a high level of involvement, parents are free to pick and choose the activities that they want their sons to participate in, and involvement in one activity is not a commitment for involvement in any other.
Who We Are
Fred Watt - Director and Coach
Fred has been coaching baseball teams for nearly a decade. In 2001, along with Nate Petty, he formed the first homeschool baseball program in Montgomery County and has been directing home school baseball ever since. Fred brings a balance of organizational and technical skills to the plate along with solid coaching experience and a winning record. Fred was the winner of the 1989 Washington Post Dugout Derby, beating out over 22,000 other individuals in a high stakes competition based on baseball managing strategy.
Shelby Thomas - Varsity Coach / Pitching Coach / Trainer
Shelby is the Falcons pitching coach and trainer and the head coach for our varsity team. An exceptional high school and college player, Shelby has trained and/or coached numerous individual players, many of whom have received college scholarships or are playing semi-pro ball. He has worked personally with a number of top athletes, including ace MLB pitcher Josh Beckett. Shelby brings an impressive level of experience and expertise to the Falcons program and will help players of all ages develop their maximum potentials.
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