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Thread: HS team attendance and planned events/appointments

  1. #51
    I can talk softball all day Elk Grove Hurricane's Avatar
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    1. Ridiculous to punish a player who has to attend a medical appointment. These appointments are incredibly difficult to schedule and, short of missing actual school, practice time is often the only available time. Waiting until summer isn't an option usually, if you're kid needs braces or work on them those issues take precedent. It's her freaking teeth, for God's sake, as fun as softball is she needs to get a job at some point in her life, and the condition of her teeth will influence her options.
    2. I'm mostly with the coach on the vacation issue. We all expect to play during spring break, and its been that way forever. If there's a long history of everyone getting the week off I can understand, but I would expect to play during that week.
    3. Prom for juniors and seniors take precedent, scheduling softball on that day is really bad form. Any coach with an ounce of sense should know enough to avoid playing then.

  2. #52
    I can talk softball all day reagansdaddy's Avatar
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    This has been a great discussion - enlightening and civil. For those who are in favor of a lenient or no penalty for missing practice, I have a scenario:

    Player A is the starting LF for her high school varsity team. Player B is her backup. Both are good kids who don't give any trouble to the coaching staff. Player A may have more experience or may have more athletic ability than Player B. There is a gap between the two but certainly not a big one. Player A misses practice (let's assume for a good reason like an appointment with a medical specialist). Player B is at practice working hard. The next game comes up and Player A is there and in the starting lineup.

    My genuine question is - how do you explain that to Player B or her parents?

    To me, as a former coach and a current parent, this is less about punishing a kid who misses practice than it is about rewarding a kid who is at practice.

  3. #53
    Certified softball maniac djcarter1966's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reagansdaddy View Post
    This has been a great discussion - enlightening and civil. For those who are in favor of a lenient or no penalty for missing practice, I have a scenario:

    Player A is the starting LF for her high school varsity team. Player B is her backup. Both are good kids who don't give any trouble to the coaching staff. Player A may have more experience or may have more athletic ability than Player B. There is a gap between the two but certainly not a big one. Player A misses practice (let's assume for a good reason like an appointment with a medical specialist). Player B is at practice working hard. The next game comes up and Player A is there and in the starting lineup.

    My genuine question is - how do you explain that to Player B or her parents?

    To me, as a former coach and a current parent, this is less about punishing a kid who misses practice than it is about rewarding a kid who is at practice.
    Coach: Player A is the starter, she missed practice for a VALID reason, once your DD wins the starting position she can start

    Parent: What's a valid reason

    Coach: Valid is what I say it is that is why I am the Coach, thank you

    In OP instance most of the other parents would know that Player A had major surgery and this follow up appointment was important and actually be asking how the appointment went unless of course they are heartless !#$%%.
    Last edited by djcarter1966; 04-21-2017 at 09:36 AM.

  4. #54
    I can talk softball all day reagansdaddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by djcarter1966 View Post
    Coach: Player A is the starter, she missed practice for a VALID reason, once your DD wins the starting position she can start

    Parent: What's a valid reason

    Coach: Valid is what I say it is that is why I am the Coach, thank you
    Parent: So attending practices doesn't matter?

  5. #55
    Certified softball maniac djcarter1966's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reagansdaddy View Post
    Parent: So attending practices doesn't matter?
    If you come to with a reason you can't make practice, I'll let you know if practice matters or not.

  6. #56
    Certified softball maniac BobInMadison's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elk Grove Hurricane View Post
    1. Ridiculous to punish a player who has to attend a medical appointment. These appointments are incredibly difficult to schedule and, short of missing actual school, practice time is often the only available time. Waiting until summer isn't an option usually, if you're kid needs braces or work on them those issues take precedent. It's her freaking teeth, for God's sake, as fun as softball is she needs to get a job at some point in her life, and the condition of her teeth will influence her options.
    2. I'm mostly with the coach on the vacation issue. We all expect to play during spring break, and its been that way forever. If there's a long history of everyone getting the week off I can understand, but I would expect to play during that week.
    3. Prom for juniors and seniors take precedent, scheduling softball on that day is really bad form. Any coach with an ounce of sense should know enough to avoid playing then.
    1. agree
    2. mostly agree, see below
    3. agree. Prom and ACT/SAT days. One time last fall the HS CC team scheduled a meet on an ACT day. DD 2 missed the meet. No punishment. To be fair, almost all the CC events are held on Saturdays, and they schedule a meet for EVERY Saturday. Kids taking ACT/SAT on a race day is considered a valid excuse.
    Since these are individual races, it doesn't matter much except for the final tally if a girl on varsity misses a meet. They wouldn't schedule the BIG meets on those days.

    As for #2, I think by far the biggest issue with spring break is whether the coaches get the information to the kids WAY ahead of time.

    Fact of the matter is, if the freshmen don't know they are supposed to go out of town on spring break, many of them will, and many of them will have non-refundable tickets booked long before they find out the rules. I am glad the coaches at my DD 3's softball team decided not to punish the freshmen this year. The freshmen didn't know the rule ahead of time, which wasn't fair to the freshmen.

    In general, if a player violates a rule the coaches didn't tell the player about ahead of time, it's on the coach, although not all coaches will take responsibility.

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  8. #57
    I can talk softball all day reagansdaddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by djcarter1966 View Post
    If you come to with a reason you can't make practice, I'll let you know if practice matters or not.
    Fair enough. I wouldn't want to try to enforce something that arbitrary, but more power to you if you can get it done.

    For me, practice matters. Attendance at practice matters. Kids who attend practice should be rewarded over kids who don't attend practice. I'm not going to change my mind just like the folks who don't think practice matters or that coaches should have an expectation that kids should actually attend practice aren't going to change their minds.

    I'm glad, in my coaching career, I rewarded the kids who were at practice. I believe it made us a better team. But, to each their own.

  9. #58
    Certified softball maniac djcarter1966's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reagansdaddy View Post
    Fair enough. I wouldn't want to try to enforce something that arbitrary, but more power to you if you can get it done.

    For me, practice matters. Attendance at practice matters. Kids who attend practice should be rewarded over kids who don't attend practice. I'm not going to change my mind just like the folks who don't think practice matters or that coaches should have an expectation that kids should actually attend practice aren't going to change their minds.

    I'm glad, in my coaching career, I rewarded the kids who were at practice. I believe it made us a better team. But, to each their own.
    Hopefully you don't treat every instance the same...going to a grandparents funeral or attending a one time event is not the same as monthly braces check up. I understand rewarding kids that go to practice but I'm also not keen on punishing kids when they are down or things out of their control.

  10. #59
    I can talk softball all day reagansdaddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by djcarter1966 View Post
    Hopefully you don't treat every instance the same...going to a grandparents funeral or attending a one time event is not the same as monthly braces check up. I understand rewarding kids that go to practice but I'm also not keen on punishing kids when they are down or things out of their control.
    Again, and this seems to be the fundamental difference in this thread, nothing is about punishing a kid who misses practice. It's about rewarding the kid who is at practice.

    I said earlier that I was not a big fan of the miss one practice miss an entire game idea. It's been a long time, so I don't remember if I ever ran into the death in the family situation, but if we did then that kid didn't start. Now, they probably would only sit one series but the kid who was at practice started. That's probably harsh in today's world which is probably why I couldn't coach a school sport today.

    I respect your point of view dj.

  11. #60
    I eat, sleep and breathe softball CoogansBluff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reagansdaddy View Post
    Again, and this seems to be the fundamental difference in this thread, nothing is about punishing a kid who misses practice. It's about rewarding the kid who is at practice.
    Agree.

    It's not about what the coach is doing to you. It's about what the coach is doing for the team. The coach believes that this policy is in the best interest of the team for the long haul, even if in the short term it might result in a less-than-ideal starting 9 on one particular Tuesday afternoon. Coach believes this helps him be consistent/fair and encourages practice attendance and sends a message about the dedication required to be good at something.

    You might disagree with that policy or prefer more flexibility. No problem with that.

    However, given the support that we see of this policy on this thread, I think people need to look at what it says about them and not the coach if their reaction is - ''Coach is a tyrant,'' ''It's just HS softball, lighten up,'' ''Coach's practices suck, what did she really miss?,'' ''DD is doing this team a favor by playing and this is how you treat her?'' etc, etc.

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