Looks at training rules, limiting team sizes
By Lily Gordon
After a number of parents expressed concern at the Sept. 5 meeting of the Haldane School Board about athletic policies at the high school, the board has started the process of making changes.
The district does not have training rules, leaving discipline to the discretion of coaches, but some parents protested what they see as a lax attitude toward athletes who skip practices or are caught using alcohol or drugs. In response, board members on Oct. 3 said they are drafting an athletic and extracurricular code of conduct.
Further, Athletic Director Chris Salumn said he will change the process of determining if eighth graders can “play up” on junior varsity and varsity teams, after parents expressed concern about the large size of some fall sports squads and the risks of having middle school students playing against high school juniors and seniors at the varsity level. Starting with winter sports, instead of responding to requests from parents, Salumn will solicit recommendations from varsity coaches.
“They’re going to recommend the children [eighth-graders] who they think can help the J.V. or varsity team,” he said. “If we both feel that it’s in the best interests of the student, I will reach out to the family and we will start that process.”
To address large teams (the Haldane girls’ varsity soccer team has 25 players, including five eighth-graders, and the boys’ varsity has 26 players, which coaches determined was not quite enough to field both J.V. and varsity squads), Haldane is discussing again having coaches make cuts rather than taking an everyone-makes-the-team approach.
“It looks like we’re moving in that direction,” said Superintendent Diana Bowers at the Oct. 3 meeting.