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SHS athletic code committee asks for written input

Written recommendations with specific details was called for during Monday night's meeting of the Sunnyside High School Athletic Code Advisory Committee.

While parents were more inclined to voice rather than write down their concerns, most agreed written copies of their concerns, complete with examples of actual incidents, will help make it easier for the advisory committee to formulate any revisions to the code.

Saying they just want the code to be fairly administered to all students, the parents are asking the advisory board to develop a clearer list of violation investigative procedures. The latest revision of the code, adopted by the Sunnyside School District Board in June 2003, requires all SHS students wishing to participate in sports to abide by the athletic code. The code includes a long list of punishments, which range from being benched to being removed from the team, when athletes are suspected of drug and alcohol violations.

The code, which also requires the signature of their parents for their child to participate, allows for an investigation into alleged violations with school administrators given the discretion to administer suitable discipline.

Signing and supporting the code is not in question, say parents. What is in question is the vagueness of how discipline will be determined and administered when violations occur.

"We want more clarification in that portion of the code," said Susie Zamarron, who feels discipline is not applied equally to all athletes accused of violations.

The 21-member advisory committee, which normally meets only three times during the school year, met in mid-December in response to parental concerns about what they called inequities in the existing athletic code of behavior, said Sunnyside High School Athletic Director Bill Daley, who served as facilitator for last night's hearing.

He said the athletic code advisory group is in the process of reviewing its mandatory athletic code, and will review all parent's written concerns before making its recommendations to the Sunnyside School Board later this school year.

Parent Daria Miller said parents want to have a clearer idea of who conducts the investigation of alleged code violations.

"We want a written check list, which outlines how administrative decisions are made," she said.

While Monday's night's meeting did include a few tense moments, the parents left feeling their written recommendations would be discussed by the advisory committee at its Feb. 9 meeting.

"That's all we ask," said Zamarron.

. Julia Hart can be contacted at

(509) 837-4500, or you can e-mail her at jhart@eaglenewspapers.com

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