Monday, September 01, 2014

Vikings adjust activity eligibility

By ABBY CROSTHWAIT, Herald Staff Writer | 5/22/2013

Students involved in athletics and extracurricular activities at Central Heights will have a new academic eligibility policy for the 2013-2014 school year, Jim White said this week.

“[The new policy] is clarifying some of the points that we had some problems with in the past,” White, Central Heights school superintendent, said.

Students involved in athletics and extracurricular activities at Central Heights will have a new academic eligibility policy for the 2013-2014 school year, Jim White said this week.

“[The new policy] is clarifying some of the points that we had some problems with in the past,” White, Central Heights school superintendent, said.

The new policy, which took effect immediately, states “any student who is either failing one or more classes or has not been released from all instructional time for previous period(s) of ineligibility when the list is generated will be ineligible to participate in any competition, performance or trip as part of any curricular or extracurricular activity for the following week.”

“Teachers file eligibility reports on Thursday by 3:45 p.m.,” White said. “That doesn’t mean the student-athletes or students involved in activities would not be eligible the next day on Friday — they wouldn’t be eligible for the next week.”

Previously, eligibility policies differed from coach to coach and did not include such activities as musical performances or class and club trips, White said.

“One of the big items, and it’s important, is that it does apply to many activities that we have at Central Heights,” he said. “Including sports, band, FFA, robotics, scholars bowl, all of those will be included. Some were, some were not previously included. Most of the staff felt like [the previous policy] was more of an athletic-eligibility policy. Now, it’s more activity-oriented.”

If a student is failing when teachers run grades Thursday afternoon, he or she will be ineligible for activities from that Sunday to the following Sunday, the policy states, whereas previously the restriction had taken effect that Thursday and Friday.

White said he thought there might be reactions from parents if a child becomes ineligible for an entire week, but the administration plans to fully inform students at the beginning of the 2013-2014 school year about the new policy.

“There won’t be any reaction until someone expects their child to be playing, and they’re not allowed to play for a week, then there will be some reaction,” he said. “ ... The parents and students and all activities will be made fully aware that [the new policy] is going to be fully operated in the future, so if there are any questions about the policy and how it was to operate, they would have had that information well in advance and they would know what the consequences were.”

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