Board of Education Policy 7420: Sports and the Athletic Program

General Principles and Eligibility

Athletics are an integral part of a well-balanced educational program. The District’s interscholastic athletic program will conform with the Commissioner’s regulations, as well as the established rules of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association and the State Education Department.

Athletic eligibility requires that the student:

a)  Provide written parental/guardian consent. The consent form must contain information regarding mild traumatic brain injuries (concussions) as specified in the Commissioner’s regulations.

b)  Obtain medical clearance from the school physician/nurse practitioner or the student’s personal physician. The school physician/nurse practitioner retains final approval on any physicals performed by a student’s personal physician.

c)  Meet the requirements for interscholastic competition as set forth by the Commissioner’s regulations and the New York State Public High School Athletic Association, Section II, Suburban Council and USRA.

d)  Comply with all District rules, codes, and standards applicable to athletic participation, including the code of conduct as set forth in the Student Athletic Handbook/Athletic Code of Conduct.

Title IX Compliance

The Board supports equal athletic opportunities for members of both sexes through interscholastic and intramural activities. To ensure equal athletic opportunities for its students, the District will consider:

a)  Its accommodation of athletic interests and abilities (the nature and extent of sports offered, including levels of competition, team competition, and team performance);

b)  Equipment and supplies;

c)  Scheduling of games and practice time;

d)  Travel costs and opportunities for travel;

e)  Assignment and compensation of coaches;

f)  Locker rooms, practice, and competitive facilities;

g)  Available medical and training facilities and services; and

h)  The nature and extent of support, publicity, and promotion, including bands, programs distributed at games, and booster club activities.

The District may consider other pertinent factors as well. Each of the factors will be assessed by comparing availability, quality, type of benefits, kind of opportunities, and form of treatment. Identical benefits, opportunities, or treatment are not required.

The District’s Civil Rights Compliance Officer will coordinate the District’s efforts to comply with and carry out its responsibilities under Title IX. This person will be appropriately trained and possess comprehensive knowledge about applicable federal and state laws, regulations, and policies. To the extent possible, the District will not designate an employee whose other job duties may create a conflict of interest, such as the athletic director.

Booster Clubs

The District has a responsibility under Title IX to ensure that boys’ and girls’ programs are provided with equivalent benefits, treatment, services, and opportunities regardless of their source. When determining equivalency, therefore, benefits, services, and opportunities attained through private funds-including donations, fundraising, and booster clubs-must be considered in combination with all benefits, services, and opportunities.

Athletic Placement Process for Interschool Athletic Programs (APP)

The APP is a method for evaluating students who want to participate in sports at higher or lower levels, consistent with their physical and emotional maturity, size, fitness level, and skills. The Board approves the use of the APP for all secondary school interscholastic team members. The Superintendent will implement procedures for the APP, and will direct the athletic director to maintain records of students who have successfully completed the APP.

Student Athletic Injuries

An appropriate medical professional should diagnose and treat an athlete’s injuries. The coach should ensure that any player injured while under his or her care receives prompt and appropriate medical attention, and that all of the medical professional’s treatment instructions are followed. The injured student has an obligation to promptly inform his or her coach of all injuries. No student will be allowed to practice or compete if there is a question whether he/she is in adequate physical condition. A physician’s certification may be required before an athlete is permitted to return to practice or competition. (See also, Student Athletic Handbook)

Athletic Program-Safety

The District will take reasonable steps to minimize physical risks posed to students participating in the interscholastic athletic program by:

a)  Requiring timely medical examinations of participants;

b)  Employing certified or licensed staff to coach all varsity, junior varsity, freshman and modified practices and games;

c)  Providing or requiring certified or licensed officials to officiate all competitions;

d)  Ensuring that its players’ equipment is safe and operates within the applicable manufacturers’ guidelines;

e)  Ensuring that all home fields, courts, pools, tracks, and other areas where athletes practice, warm-up, or compete are safe and appropriate for use; and

f)  Providing professional development and training opportunities for all coaching staff.

Alternative Physical Education Credit

Students in grades 11 and 12 may receive Physical Education credit towards high school graduation for participation in interscholastic athletics.  Such credit will be contingent upon proven cardiovascular and physical fitness and competency in lifetime or carry-over sports.  Standards for such fitness and competency shall be developed by the administration.

Ref:   Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 USC Section 1681 et seq.

45 CFR Part 86

8 NYCRR Sections 135 and 136

Adopted October 15, 2015