What would YOU do about it?

<p>OK. So junior D plays a public high school varsity sport for a couple years, works hard at it, and is set up this year to be in a great position to contribute at a higher level. New coach comes in this year with grand ideas. About a month into it, kid realizes the expected time commitment is vastly more demanding than in the past years and is seeing the time, about 20 hrs week, including missed school days for games, is interfering with school performance. Kid, on her own, communicates to coach that she can't play in all of the school day games and weekend practices because her grades are starting to suffer. She indicates she still is interested in being on the team and wants to continue weekday practice with the team. Coach, perhaps as you'd expect, ignores her for the rest of the season, substitutes other players, & ends up with a losing season for a number of other reasons. At the end of the year team party, the coach pulls her aside and says, "Don't ever pull that S---- on me again!". Now this is a quiet, shy, honest & serious student--she didn't even disclose the conversation except when parent probed when realizing something was wrong after the party. Kid was humiliated. Parent provided emotional support, indicating it'll happen again in life and indicating she'd done the right thing regarding school.
But what would you DO about it? This will pass but I don't want to look back and wish I'd done something different about it. Suggestions welcome.</p>

<p>I go up to the coach and B**** him out and get him fired.</p>

<p>I think you handled it fine.</p>

<p>I'd just also make it clear to the daughter that she is free to pick another team, sport, leisure sport activity, league-play sport rather than stay on with that coach for her senior year. It doesn't sound like she is athletic scholarship material (let me know if I misread between the lines) and in reality, most kids don't play their HS sport even in college.</p>

<p>And if she wants to keep the sport for her senior year, your D will have her eyes open and have more realistic expectations about the coach.</p>

<p>I can't believe the coach behaved that way. That is completely wrong and unprofessional and the worst part is he made your daughter feel like SHE had done something wrong when really, she had done everything right. A half-way decent coach, especially in high school, should put his kids' academic performance as the top priority and find ways for them to contribute and succeed as student athletes. I would not allow my child to keep playing for someone with such callous disregard for the influence he has over the athletes he is supposed to be training and with such screwed up priorities. </p>

<p>Your D should see if she can continue the sport in some other capacity, but I wouldn't leave her vulnerable and open to that kind of emotional manipulation from the coach. Of course she's heartbroken now, but she hasn't done anything wrong and she just needs to keep hearing that he's in the wrong and it's his problem, has nothing to do with her choices, which were completely solid.</p>

<p>Does she want to keep playing?</p>

<p>Yes, she would like to play but prob won't bother trying out with that coach. This next year would be the last season for her & she should have more time next year. It wouldn't devastate her not to play but if another coach was there she would try out. She will not play this sport competitively in college except maybe intramural. Thank you all for your fast responses & great advice.</p>

<p>JRNmom - something similar happened to a friend of my son. When all was said and done, he did not tryout for basketball his senior year and his parents have told me that it was the best gift their family ever received. It made for a much more relaxed senior year and it dramatically increased the amount of time they got to spend together as a family before the kid goes off to college.</p>

<p>It will always be a battle between a coach who claims the kid didn't work hard enough and a kid who didn't/couldn't do what a coach wanted. I'd just point out to the kid that you'll find people/bosses who think this way and move on.</p>

<p>I have ZERO tolerance for coaches who use foul language to/at minors. that is not tolerable and I would let the AD and the principal know.</p>

<p>Sports and academics are strange bedfellows. So many coaches want players to live for sport alone and so few kids can or will continue to play - even in college. Either find another way to participate in the sport (club teams etc.) or enjoy the gift of a less stressful senior year.</p>

<p>IMO this coach is a prime example of why our odd combination of sport/school is undermining our academic competitiveness in the developed world. It is shameful that we have school employees who aren't aware of the purpose of school - it's academic, not athletic.</p>

<p>Ughh... even our jerky coach would never talk to a kid that way. I would also go to the AD (especially if she isn't going to play again). This is for the good of the younger players more than it is for your daughter.</p>

<p>All the coaches talk big about academics and other school activities being important... most don't mean a WORD of it.</p>

<p>I also find it surprising that a coach would expect players in high school to miss class for a game. And that the school would allow that. </p>

<p>If the student no longer wants to play, that would be fine with me. If she does, then she would do so with the understanding that the coach is a jerk and school comes first. But as a parent, I would take up the issue with the administration either now if the student quits, or after she graduates if she plays next year.</p>

<p>Expecting kids to put a sport first in high school is unacceptable.</p>

<p>This is completely unprofessional behavior on the coach's part. As a parent, I would speak to the Athletic Director about this incident. I would also make sure the AD is aware of the amount of time this coach is requiring of the students, as 20 hrs a week seems a little excessive(unless this is swimming and they are doing doubles, 20 hrs is not that uncommon for high profile teams). I spent many years coaching high school swimming and I think your daughter did the right thing by talking to the coach. I understand that the time commitment was more than she expected, but I can also understand the coach feeling that she bailed on the team. And I can understand the coach playing the kids who did attend all the practices and make all the games. Unfortunately, that is the natural consequences of your daughter cutting back on the time she could commit to the team. But the coach was absolutely out of line to speak to your daughter that way and as a parent, I would get involved.</p>

<p>IMO, the Athletic Director and the Principal need to be made aware.
There should be zero tolerance for abusive language.
DD should let the AD and Principal know why she will not be a 4 year athlete in this sport.</p>

<p>I would talk to the coach first. Confront him/her and see what they have to say for themselves. Follow up with a meeting with the AD. It's one thing for a coach to have certain requirements for playing time. That's fine. There is no reason for the coach to talk to your daughter the way he/she did. Your daughter acted very mature and the coach acted like a jerk. Usually if someone is a jerk, they're a jerk to many people. You might not be the first to complain.</p>

<p>3bm103 - Our student athletes will sometimes miss class for travel to away games. It is the student's responsibility to get in touch with the teacher whose class they are missing and complete any missed assignments.</p>

<p>
[quote]
I also find it surprising that a coach would expect players in high school to miss class for a game. And that the school would allow that.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>In many, many parts of the country distances are great between schools in the same league. Our HS teams can travel as much as 2.5 hours on non snow covered roads and more time if the roads are bad and highway speeds are low to one of the schools. For "after school" sports this requires "early dismissal"...happens all the time through all the sports seasons. The vast majority of coaches "get" that these kids balance classes/grades/practice/games etc. and a great majority of kids do end up making decisions in their teens regarding priorities...some try to do it all. In general, these balance situations are great lessons and serve the kids well as they head off to college and have to make decisions regarding their use of time. No one holds their hand or "arranges" accomodations, it is what it is.</p>

<p>Every once in a while there is an idiot coach as the OP as discovered.</p>

<p>I think that 20 hours a week might be around where the NCAA practice limit is for Division 1 sports in season. Should not be required or happening in high school. My suggestion is to go above the coach's head, and ask first about number of practice hours and then say what the coach is doing. I think that requiring that many hours is inappropriate, and I think that hte handling of it is. At a high school level, especially if the team is not very elite (which it doesn't sound like with a losing season), classes really need to come first.</p>

<p>"including missed school days for games"</p>

<p>This may be normal in many parts of the country, but that doesn't make it right. I think it's awful that a school would allow -- encourage! -- this. They're missing entire days? If the other schools are too far away to allow for weekday travel, then the games ought to be on weekends only. If that means fewer games, so be it.</p>

<p>At any rate, the OP lives in the SF Bay Area. There's no snow, and even with traffic, it shouldn't take 2.5 hours to drive to a competitive team. Maybe that would make sense for a statewide competition a few times a year. It also sounds like this wasn't a problem with the old coach at that school.</p>

<p>"I have ZERO tolerance for coaches who use foul language to/at minors. that is not tolerable and I would let the AD and the principal know."</p>

<p>I agree. The coach's behavior was totally unacceptable, and his supervisors need to know. This is the kind of situation in which parents need to get involved.</p>

<p>OP - The exact same thing happened to me when I was in HS many eons ago. In those days parents didn't challenge what happened in school, so I was left to deal with it myself. I decided to leave the team rather than compromise what I felt was appropriate. It was an unhappy decision, but not one I regretted. I agree with the posters who say it's a great life lesson ... often one has to decide between what you want, and what you need.</p>