Cedar Springs Girl's Soccer: Athletic Handbook

Code of Conduct
Athletic Handbook
Revised and Approved by the Board of Education
May 22, 2006
INTRODUCTION
This handbook is designed for students and parents to help define the role of athletics in Cedar Springs Public Schools. The purpose of this athletic handbook is threefold:
1.      To help you understand our athletic philosophy.
2.      To help you understand our athletic objectives.
3.      To help you understand our athletic regulations.
As an athlete or parent representing Cedar Springs Public Schools and its communities, you must fully understand the responsibilities that accompany this privilege. Your actions, attitude and desire will reflect first and foremost on you. Second, it will reflect on your family, your team, school and community.

Your coaches and school athletic department want to help you be successful and make the most of your high school opportunities.

Philosophy of Athletics

Athletics are part of the total educational program of the Cedar Springs Public Schools. We realize not everyone can be a team member, but we do realize everyone can benefit from the program. The criteria upon which our program is judged is as follows:
1.       Interscholastic participation is a privilege, not a right and must be earned.
2.       Participation in interscholastic athletics is for those that have physical skills appropriate for the respective sport.
3.       Success of the program is not necessarily determined by the win/loss record.
4.       School and community values should be evident throughout the program.
5.       The school community is identified by the publicity generated through the athletic program.
6.       The coaching staff, athletes, student body, and adult followers should never act in a manner that would be detrimental to the name of Cedar Springs Public Schools.

Objectives of Athletics

An athletic program must have objectives to be meaningful. These objectives are applicable for all levels. The objective should be consistent with its philosophy and the educational objectives of Cedar Springs Public Schools.

The Cedar Springs Athletic Program is dedicated to the following objectives within available means:
1.      Provide all athletes with the best teaching and coaching personnel possible.
2.      Provide all athletes with the best facilities and equipment possible.
3.      Provide the opportunity for all athletes to participate in the best interscholastic program possible.
4.      Provide all spectators an opportunity to identify with and support the interscholastic teams of Cedar Springs.
5.      Provide all athletes an opportunity to grow physically, mentally, and emotionally through participation in the athletic program.
The Goals of Athletic Participation
The ultimate goal of every athlete is to become a more effective citizen in our society. This can be realized by achieving the goals through athletic participation.

The Goals of Athletic Participation (continued)
1.      YOU LEARN TEAM WORK ¬– To work with others in society a person must develop self-discipline, respect for authority, and the spirit of hard work and sacrifice. You accomplish this by placing the team and its objectives higher than your personal desires.
2.      YOU LEARN TO BE SUCCESSFUL – Our society is very competitive. You will not always win, but you will succeed when you continually strive to do so.
3.      YOU LEARN TO BE A GOOD SPORT – You must learn to humbly accept success. You must also learn to accept defeat knowing that you’ve done your best. You must constantly strive to treat others as you would have them treat you. Through participation in athletics, you must develop positive social traits. Some of these traits worth mentioning are: emotional control, honesty, cooperativeness, and dependability.
4.      YOU LEARN TO ENJOY ATHLETICS – Students are involved in athletics for many reasons, including the enjoyment derived from participating. It is hoped that you will learn to enjoy this period in your life and appreciate your personal rewards.
5.      YOU MUST LEARN DESIRABLE HEALTH HABITS – To be an active, contributing citizen, it is important to obtain and maintain a high degree of physical fitness through exercise and good health habits. Your participation in athletics should demonstrate to you the importance of good health habits. It is hoped that you will have developed a desire to maintain this level of physical fitness after formal competition has been completed.
Sportsmanship
It is important to both our school and our community that Cedar Springs athletic teams and spectators (adults as well as students) show good sportsmanship at all times. Please review the following suggestions for future considerations.
1.      A student or adult spectator represents his/her school the same as the athlete.
2.      The good name of the school is more valuable than any game won by unfair play.
3.      Recognize and show appreciation of fine play or good sportsmanship on the part of the opponent.
4.      Accept decisions of officials without dispute.
5.      Advocate that any spectator or athlete who continually demonstrates poor sportsmanship be excused from the athletic program.
Conduct of an Athlete
The conduct of an athlete is closely observed in many areas of life. It is important that your behavior be above reproach in the following areas at all times.
1.      Students and parents are reminded that the school rules and regulations as set forth in the student handbook are the basis for dealing with all student related matters. The Athletic Code of Conduct is to be viewed as an addition to the high school handbook and is intended to deal with the behavior and conduct of the student athlete.
2.      On and off the field of competition, your conduct should be beyond reproach at all times.
3.      The way we act and look on campus is of great importance. Athletes should be leaders and fellow students should respect and follow them.
4.      The use of school equipment is important. We are committed to purchasing the best at all times. If you destroy or steal equipment, then you are taking from yourself and teammates. Each athlete is financially responsible for all equipment checked out at replacement cost.
5.      Any athlete removed from a team for disciplinary reasons will not be allowed to try out for another team during the same season. (Example: wrestling to basketball).
6.      Any athlete cut from a team shall be able to try out for another team during that season.
7.      Quitting is a very serious manner! Any student athlete who chooses not to fulfill a commitment must meet with the athletic director and coach before trying out for another sport during that season or any other.
Being a student athlete carries with it a great responsibility. Not everyone is fortunate enough in his/her life to participate in athletics. Since you are afforded this opportunity, you will be expected to observe these guidelines while participation in our athletic programs.
General Information
1.       There may be occasions when you will have a conflict of responsibilities.   We suggest the following set of values to aid you in determining your prime responsibilities. A.    Home and Family responsibilities
B.    Academic responsibilities
C.    Athletic responsibilities
D.    All other social and school responsibilities

2.       Athletes who have not turned all equipment in from one sport will not be eligible for any future sports participation, either practice or games, until the equipment has been accounted for or the school district reimbursed.
3.       To participate in an athletic contest/practice or performance, an athlete must be in school for the entire day. Any deviations to this rule (i.e. doctor’s appt./college visit) must be cleared by the principal or athletic director prior to the absence. Extenuating circumstances will be dealt with by administration on a case-by-case basis.
4.       Students who have been suspended from school for disciplinary reasons (example: skipping school, fighting, smoking, etc.) are not to practice or participate in athletic competition of any kind until they are reinstated in school and have met with the athletic director and his/her coach.
5.       No student may practice or participate on any athletic team without a physical and a signed athletic permission form on file in the athletic office.
6.       No student athlete will be allowed to return to practice or to an athletic contest if they had been treated by a medical professional for an injury until they have a written release signed by a medical professional.

7.       All Cedar Springs athletes are expected to depart and return on the team bus for all away contests if it is provided by the district. Athletes may make arrangements to ride home from a contest with a parent/guardian provided the proper transportation forms have been turned into the athletic office and the athlete/parent/guardian has signed out with the coach at the contest. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES MAY AN
ATHLETE DRIVE
THEMSELVES TO/FROM AN ATHLETIC CONTEST.
8.       Communication throughout the athletic department should be complete and thorough. It is suggested that the following pattern of communication be used to avoid misunderstandings.
1)                Player > Coach
2)                Parent > Coach
3)                Player/Parent > coach > athletic director
*Communication should always be conducted in a mature and productive
manner.
*Timing is everything – communication should always be avoided immediately after a contest. Emotions are usually running high and communication is often nonproductive.
MHSAA Eligibility

1.        Age – High School students become ineligible if they reach their nineteenth birthday before September 1 of the current school year. (Fourteen for 7th Grade and Fifteen for 8th Grade)

2.        Enrollment – Students must be enrolled in school prior to the fourth Friday after Labor Day (1st semester) or the fourth Friday in February (2nd semester)

3.        Semesters of enrollment – Students cannot be eligible in high school for more than eight semesters, and the seventh and eighth must be consecutive.

4.        Academic Records – Students must have passed at least the equivalent of 20 credit hours in the previous semester of enrollment, and must be currently passing the same.

5.        Transfer Students – A student in grades 9-12 who transfers to another high school is not eligible to participate in an interscholastic contest for one full semester unless the student qualifies for immediate eligibility under one or more of 15 published exceptions. Students and parents anticipating a change of schools should first seek advice from their high school administration.

6.        Undue Influence – The use of undue influence by any person directly or indirectly associated with a school to secure or encourage the attendance of a student for athletic purposes, shall cause the student to become ineligible for a minimum of one semester.

7.        Limited Team Membership – After practicing with or participating with high school teams, students cannot participate in any athletic competition not sponsored by his or her school in the same sport in the same season. Exceptions include all individual sports, which apply the rule from the point of a student’s first participation in a contest or scrimmage, rather than practice. Students in individual sports may participate in a maximum of two non-school individual meets or contests during the school season while not representing their school.

8.        All-Star Competition – Students shall not compete at any time in any sport under the MHSAA jurisdiction in all-star contests or national championships, regardless of the method of selection. Participation in such a contest shall cause that student to become ineligible for a maximum period of one year of school enrollment.

9.        Awards and Amateurism – Students cannot receive money or other valuable consideration for participating in MHSAA-sponsored sports or officiating in interscholastic athletic contests, except as allowed by the MHSAA Handbook. Students may accept, for participating in MHSAA-sponsored sports, a symbolic or merchandise award, which does not have a value over $25.

10.        Physical Examination – Students must have on file, in the school’s office, a physician’s statement for the current school year (after April 15), certifying that he/she is physically able to compete in athletic practices and contests.

Cedar Springs High School Eligibility
All students must do or complete the following requirements in order to participate in an in-season practice or contest:

1.        Athletic Physical/Permission Form
All students must have completed and turned into the Athletic Department Office a completely filled out Athletic Physical/Permission Form dated after April 15 of the previous school year. A completely filled out form includes:

o        family information – student’s name, address, birth date, etc.

o        physical card – doctor’s assessment of athlete’s health and appropriate signature

o        emergency information – contact information and treatment consent authorization

2.        Transfer Students
All transfer students from another high school must meet with the athletic director and verify eligibility before he/she can become a member of a team.

High School Academic Eligibility
Weekly - Grade monitoring will be conducted by the athletic department on Friday of each week. Any student who receives one (1) F on their weekly check will become ineligible for one week (Monday through the next week Friday). Any student who receives two (2) or more D’s will be notified and put on academic probation. The student will have one (1) week to improve the grade – if improvements are not made the student will become ineligible for one (1) week (Monday through the next week Friday).
All athletes will be notified and a summary of the weekly check will be forwarded to all in-season coaches and the athletes teachers. Teachers will be required to have grades updated by 3:00 p.m. on Thursday and will be encouraged to report on any athlete who is struggling or having behavior problems. All students will be encouraged to arrange with staff members extra study sessions before school, at lunch or after school.

Trimester Requirements –
Cedar Springs High School requires that all students must have earned credit in four (4) out of five (5) from the previous trimester to be eligible for the current trimester. In addition, Cedar Springs High School requires that all students attain a minimum C- (1.7) grade point average in the previous trimester in order to be eligible for the current trimester. If a student fails to meet these requirements they will become ineligible for ninety (90) school days. In order to regain eligibility a student will be allowed to use credit recovery. This must be done within four (4) weeks after the trimester has ended.
Appeals Process - for extenuating circumstances–. A committee (Athletic Director, High School Principal and Counselor) will review all applicants and appeals will be considered based on the following criteria:
1. teacher evaluations
2. ability of student
3. strength of schedule
4. extenuating circumstances
Students/Parents have the right to appeal the 1.7 GPA rule their academic ineligibility if they have passed 4 out of the 5 classes. Students who have sub 1.7 GPA’s will be notified. Letters of appeal from the parent or guardian should be turned in to the high school principal or the athletic director within two (2) weeks of the trimester ending.
TRAINING RULES and VIOLATIONS
1.      Training rules are in effect from the first day of practice that begins his/her athletic career until the end of his/her athletic career and are enforced 365 days a year.
2.      Middle School student athletes are subject to the same penalties as High School student athletes.
3.      Students entering high school will begin with a clean slate.
4.      The penalties for violations of the training rules are as follows:
1st OFFENSE—30% of the regularly scheduled games or contest dates of that sport(s).
Self-reporting clause: In an attempt to encourage honesty, any student athlete who self-reports an athletic code violation prior to an investigation and is helpful with any follow-up to that incident, will have their first offense penalty reduced to 20% of the regularly scheduled games or contest dates of that sport(s).

2nd OFFENSE—60% of the regularly scheduled games or contest dates of that sport.
                           
3rd OFFENSE—Dismissal from the athletic program for the remainder of that students high school career.
5.      If less than the required percentage of games is left during the season in which the infraction occurs, the remainder of the penalty will carry over to the next season in which the student participates.
6.      During the period of suspension, unless an athlete has been suspended from school, the individual or individuals are required to practice every night and to be in attendance at all contest dates during this period on the bench as a spectator not dressed in uniform and/or given a task assigned by the coach.
7.      For any athlete who is found to have possessed or used alcohol or drugs, it is strongly recommended to seek counseling.
8.      The number of contest dates to be missed by an athlete in violation of the training rules is calculated by taking the number of contest dates or meets scheduled and multiplying by the percentage factor of the violation. Calculations which end in .4 or below are rounded down, .5 are rounded up.
9.      Any athlete that does not complete the season in good standing will forfeit all rights and privileges to be part of the team (including served suspension time) and rights to any previously earned awards. (Letter, Certificates, etc.)
10. Regularly scheduled games do not include any post-season MHSAA Tournament games.
Substance Abuse Regulations
An athlete shall not be in possession of, use, sell, distribute, or be under the influence of illicit controlled substances. The possession, use, sale, or distribution of substance abuse paraphernalia is also prohibited. Illicit controlled substances include alcohol in any form; illegal drugs, including but not limited to those substances defined as “controlled substances” under Federal or Michigan law; tobacco in any form; drugs which are not lawfully prescribed, including steroids or imitation controlled substances or “look-alike” drugs.
Although tobacco may be legally purchased and used by 18-year olds, and alcohol may be legally consumed in other countries, its purchase and use by Cedar Springs student athletes is prohibited.
Possession by an athlete is defined as the student athlete becoming part of a situation where alcohol or drugs are illegally present or being used. If a student athlete recognizes they are present in this type of an environment, they are expected to make arrangements to leave the situation immediately, or face the consequences of their actions.
Conduct Unbecoming an Athlete
Conduct in and out of school shall be such that to bring no discredit to the athletes, parents, school, or team. Any conduct considered unbecoming an athlete will fall under the same training rule violations as the substance abuse policy. Examples of conduct unbecoming an athlete are as follows, the list not being inclusive: stealing, retail fraud, abusing/destroying/defacing school property, any felony convictions, disrespect for authority, and persistent classroom misconduct.
General Conduct Regulations
Any cases of general misconduct by an athlete on or off the athletic field not deemed conduct unbecoming will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis and decisions regarding athletic suspensions will rest with the athletic director and high school principal.
Disqualification Guidelines
Any athlete who is ejected/disqualified from an athletic contest will be subject to the following penalties:
1st Offense – Suspended from the next date of competition (per MHSAA).
2nd Offense – Suspended from the next two (2) dates of competition.
3rd Offense – (and any subsequent offenses) – Violation for Conduct Unbecoming an Athlete.
Training and Disciplinary Violation Procedure

1.                         School employees such as school board members, administration, teachers and coaches, who witness an offense shall have power to inform the athletic director in writing so that disciplinary action in accordance with the established procedure can take place on the violation. Police notification, police reports, and court records may also be utilized.
2.                         All acts of violation of training rules and disciplinary action shall be given to the athletic director in writing and dated by the person witnessing the violation. Violations must be reported to the athletic director within 30 days (exception: police notification) after the violation occurs and all penalties served within 365 days of the reported date or the penalty is dropped. The athletic director will then have 30 days to act following notification. The order of appeal for disciplinary action will be as follows: athletic director, high school principal, superintendent, school board.

3.                         Court convictions for violation of the training rules and conduct not becoming an athlete will serve as justification for suspension in accordance with the athletic handbook. The athletic director will have 30 days after publication of the court notice.
4.                         The athletic director, principal, and superintendent reserves the right to review the record of any athlete who consistently violates training rules for more drastic and far reaching disciplinary action.
5.                         The athletic director, principal, and superintendent has power of suspension for reasons not specifically identified.
All the above training rules have a carry over from year to year. Training rules also apply during summer months. The training rules are the minimal standards which are to be adhered to by Cedar Springs High School athletes and coaching staff. But, any coach may implement his/her own training rules and regulations which go above and beyond the minimum standards previously stated. These rules must be approved by the athletic director and given in writing to the athletes and their parents.
All training rule violations must be served as consecutive athletic contests which will include any and all post season competition as defined in Regulation 1, Section 12, of the M.H.S.A.A. Handbook.
Spectator Guidelines
All spectators are expected to behave in a proper manner when attending athletic events. Any student, parent, or fan that behaves in a manner not acceptable to the administration of the event will be removed from that contest and is subject to denied entry to any Cedar Springs Athletic events for a period of up to one year.
ATHLETIC INSURANCE

The school district will provide parents the opportunity to purchase athletic insurance coverage. Sign up forms are available from your child’s coach, the athletic office, or the
school office. The policy is designed for parents with no insurance protection or those that wish to use it as a supplement to their family insurance. Registration and payment must be made during the first week of the fall season.
POTENTIAL DANGERS IN ATHLETIC PARTICIPATION

Parents and student athletes should fully understand and appreciate the risk of serious personal injury associated with participation in the educational sports’ program provided by the Cedar Springs Public Schools. Participation in school athletics involves flying objects, swift movement of bodies which many times are airborne, and unavoidable collisions.
Athletic activities are hazardous and taking part in such activities is calculated risk-taking on the part of the student athlete and parents. It is also understandable, that to many young adults, the potential benefits exceed participation and offer stimulating adventure that satisfies the student athletes desires for competition, strenuous effort, and creative activity. Reducing injuries to a minimum without subtracting from this adventure is a continuous goal of our coaching and administration staff.
PARTICIPATION FEES
Beginning with the 2003-04 school year, the Board of Education has supported a participation fee for students to be involved in the athletic program. The fee at the high school level will be $100 and at the middle school level will be $50. This fee is expected to be paid prior to the first contest date of the school year for each student. This fee allows students to participate in as many athletic activities as they desire (following a tryout period) and also provides a pass for entry into all Cedar Springs athletic events for the school year. These fees are subject to change on a year-to-year basis pending recommendations from the athletic office and support from the Board of Education.
TITLE IX – NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY
The Cedar Springs Public Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, height, weight, marital status, political belief, disability, or handicap in its programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquires regarding the nondiscrimination process:
Mr. Ron McDermed, Associate Superintendent
204 East Muskegon Street
Cedar Springs, MI 49319
(616) 696-1204
CEDAR SPRINGS PUBLIC SCHOOLS
CODE OF CONDUCT FOR ATHLETES

I am an athlete at Cedar Springs High School and am trying out for the
_______________________________ team. I have read and understand the Athletic
Code and hereby agree to abide by its rules and regulations.
                                                          ___________________________________________
Signature of Athlete                                                 Grade
                                                            ___________________________________________
                                                             Print Athlete’s Name

We have read the Athletic Code and agree to the best of our ability to abide by and help our son/daughter live by its rules and regulations.
                                                             ___________________________________________
                                                             Signature of Parent/Guardian
Please circle other potential sports which you may be involved.
Basketball                  Baseball                     Tennis             Football
Softball                      Cross Country          Cheerleading             Volleyball
Wrestling                   Track                         Golf                            Soccer
Equestrian                Bowling                      Roller Hockey