County Wide Sports: Eligibility policy made for student athletes

Miller Romm, Back Page Editor

For a student athlete to play they need at least a 2.0 GPA and have no more than two E’s. This policy has been debated by county officials and they are looking to make a change.

Students argue that this policy is not fair as they might have a 2.0 but have more than two E’s. Students may struggle with two classes or have certain circumstances where they cannot get work done for some classes. There are also circumstances where athletes cannot come to school or fail to do their homework or study based on their situation at home. These students cannot make a simple explanation to their teacher about their struggles, so instead of having a support system they have no one to lean on. This lack of access would make this student feel worse about what they are doing in school, and maybe take away their motivation.

There is also a suggestion by the board that the GPA should be higher, but the number of E’s should be irrelevant. The main things the board looks at are motivation access. Raising the GPA would help the motivation of athletes as they would have to work harder and achieve greater success.

With a higher GPA, students would not be inclined to barely get all D’s, but instead would be motivated to do as well as possible.

While it all seems like a good idea, there are many issues with this suggestion. First, athletes would change their focus and barely get whatever they have to get to be eligible. Another reason for the change being a bad idea is the fact that all other counties in Maryland have the same policy. “2.0 is fair, but there can still be an adjustments to the policy such as students who struggle in one class but do well in others,” Athletic Director Al Lightsey said.

The next proposal is to get rid of the eligibility process as a whole for the school and leave the grades to the coaches and what they require. Getting rid of the eligibility policy would create academic issues, because some coaches would not enforce the grades and only focus on the certain person’s athletic ability. This would not give them a punishment if they did poorly, because there would not be any guidance on their academics. Without this responsibility these students could roam the hallways consistently and refuse to work hard in school. “I do not like this idea because I believe this is not helpful for the athlete or the school,” junior George Misovic said.
Senior Miranda Wright and I vote on these changes, so come to us if you have any questions or opinions on this topic. These opinions will be heard at our monthly SALC meetings.