SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska



What message are we sending to our student athletes?
By Matt Olsen


March 04, 2006
Saturday PM

These are the facts as reported in the Ketchikan Daily News article, "Games off after violation reports", dated March 2, 2006:

  • A portion of the boys and girls Varsity basketball teams violated Kayhi's training rules
  • Other members of the teams on the same trip did not violate the rules
  • Of those who violated the rules, some have been disciplined while some have not
  • The final two regular season games and the annual senior recognition night have been cancelled


What message are we sending to our student athletes? Those who choose to participate in extra-curricular activities have the rules and penalties for violating the rules defined at the beginning of each season. By arbitrarily, and against Kayhi policies as described in the KDN article, canceling the upcoming games we are telling our students that:

  • Any agreement or contract can be broken or altered at a whim by those who hold the position of authority without repercussion
  • All members of a program are guilty for any individuals violation of the rules
  • An individual can be punished multiple times for the same violation
  • The members of the program who did not violate the training rules, who practiced hard and kept up in school while striving to be members of the Varsity are not good enough to represent the program on the basketball court

Those teenage team members who violated the training rules had a moment of stupidity. What moment did the adult members of the school district (School Board, Administration, and School Staff) have when they violated their own rules? This verdict has resulted in all levels of the school district, top to bottom, having lost credibility and the future ability to render judgment on any level of discipline. Punishing the entire program hurts those who played by the rules and the community while allowing the guilty parties to bring all team members under the dark cloud that hovers over the program.

Twenty three years ago eleven members of the Juneau-Douglas High School Varsity team were caught with alcohol at a party and were suspended from the team for the rest of the season, including the region five tournament. The one remaining Varsity member guided the call-ups from the Junior Varsity team to finish fifth at the Tournament. Not only were they constantly cheered on by their home fans, but they received cheers from many others who recognized the heart and effort they put forth in representing their school. The same type of heart and effort we would no doubt have witnessed last weekend if the upstanding members of the basketball program had been given the opportunity to represent themselves, their school and the community.

Matt Olsen
Ketchikan, AK - USA

About: Matt Olsen writes he is "a member of the community who denies his relation to Ken Lewis".

Related News:

Games off after violation reports....
Ketchikan Daily News - Thursday - March 02, 2006 - (Subscription required)



Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


Write a Letter -------Read Letters

E-mail the Editor

Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska