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Academic responsibility debatable

Parents often cheer for their children at sporting events. However, while some praise their child’s athletic ability, they may ignore their son or daughter’s classroom performance.

Student-athletes may struggle in the classroom, creating controversy between coaches and parents over the responsibility of who is to guide an athlete’s academic activity.

“A role that coaches have is being sensitive to the balance between academics and athletics,” Scott Callisch, athletic director and teacher, said. “A coach should schedule practices so that students can maintain a healthy academic career while participating in sports.”

According to Callisch, less than five percent of all campus athletes over the past five years have been ruled academically ineligible. Other schools associated with the West Sierra League may have up 40% of their athletes ruled academically ineligible.

“A coach should be in charge of a student’s academic responsibilities,” Robert Foshee, girls’ soccer coach, said. “They should offer study halls to keep students eligible for sports.”

A student-athlete must achieve a minimum of a 2.0 grade point average in order to be eligible for sports on campus. Disciplinary actions by students can also account for ineligibility.

“A coach’s job is coaching, not to be responsible for their players’ academics,” Rick Logan, parent of a student-athlete, Joey Logan, ’07, said. “Coaches have other responsibilities of their own off the court; as a parent I have the responsibility of educating my child.”

Miscommunication occurs when academics and athletics blend together. Students are in charge of their own lives, and learning time management seems fundamental because students sooner or later will be on their own.

“I feel that as a student I should be accountable for my own grades,” Bonnie Hansen, ’07, said. “Parents should help keep their kids on track; coaches already have enough to worry about besides academics.”

For more information concerning this campus’ student-athlete obligations or questions related to athletics contact athletic director Callisch, at 299-1695, ext.129.

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