Saturday, August 19, 2006

California coaches must now be "certified"

I received this letter from our athletic director.

As of 2008, all high school coaches in the state of California must successfully complete the Coaching Principles "Bronze Level" course by the American Sport Education Program (ASEP) in order to coach at the high school level.

I did a little research and found this;

With the passing of the new Coaching Education and Steroid/Performance-Enhancing
Supplements bylaws there have been many questions about what this means for schools
and coaches in California. In May 2005, the State CIF Federated Council voted
unanimously to join 33 other states in the mandated "certification" of coaches.
- California Interscholastic Federation

The CIF has been so damned freaked out about the whole steroid mess, that they are now requiring that coaches take a course in, well, coaching. The basics are this:
-every coach must be "certified" by December 2008
-a new coach may coach one sport/season without the certification to give them time to take the course
-the course online at the American Sport Education Program is $105.
-if the course is instructed by a member of your school or district, the fee is $65.

This is a tough one, since I think their are a ton of really bad coaches out there, from parents that think their kid is the next coming of Christ, to horrible role models that are living out past glories through their team. Just today I ran into to Pop Warner coaches smoking on my campus by the football field. I told them that this was a no smoking campus and they stared me down like they were some frat jocks protecting the precious beer keg. What idiots, and those idiots were coaching young kids. Still, is this class really going to weed out bad coaches? Not at all, and in the end, it's going to be a matter of who is going to pay to coach? Coaches will have to pay for fingerprinting, CPR/First Aid, and now certification. We are talking hundreds of dollars, where a pay check for a freshman coach is next to nothing as it is.

I know, I know, "People don't coach for the money". You're right, and I'll be taking this class on Monday to get my certification. However, the pressure should be with the schools themselves, not some idiot certification that will say things like "Be nice", "Have good sportsmanship", and "Say no to drugs". This will only make finding good coaches harder, something that is a problem at our school. Sure, you have the know-it-alls that want to coach football, basketball, and baseball, but how about the minor sports that don't get all the crowds and school support? It's simply not the same.

So, let's see the impact this has on coaching at the high school ranks, because it will have next to no impact on the steroid issue that it is attempting to focus on. Kids know it is wrong to juice, coaches tell them all the time at our school. But if parents don't get more involved, and our town continues to be so accepting of the drug culture, then the coaches role in a child's life will remain minimal.
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