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Role of Parents

Parents are expected to set the standard of exemplary sportsmanship at all times especially while attending games/matches, and when discussing Notre Dame Prep athletics with others and at home.

Because of the nature of athletic competition, parents can be detrimental to a student’s development when they become too involved as aggressive spectators and /or when they as self-appointed player “agents” or when they become “bleacher coaches” who choose to publicly second guess coaches’ decisions.  Parents can also be susceptible to the temptation to blame the coach for poor play or lack of performance by their student athlete or the team.   When these types of behaviors occur, the child of these parents may feel excused for his/her effort, or lack thereof, and poor attitudes toward the coach and the team may develop as a result.  

Parents need to trust the school and coach as partners in the Catholic education and development of their child.

Coaches are certainly fallible people who will make mistakes at times.  However, there must be a trust that the coach is doing everything that he/she can to help their child in their development as athletes and young adults.  Mutual trust, respect and encouragement among coaches, players and parents will result in top quality programs.  This is not to say that the parents of a student/athlete should remain silent if a problem arises.  

  • As with teachers, parents should feel free to have open, constructive discussions with the coach on issues pertaining to their child.
  • Parents should expect that the coach will respond with honesty, respect and mutual concern for the well-being of their child.
  • Parents are advised not to discuss playing time with the coach, but to have their child initiate the conversation.
  • Parents should not contact the coach in the “heat of the moment” but, rather, should wait, at least overnight, until emotions have cooled.
  • Parents should use discretion and restraint when determining whether to bring a concern forward to a coach.  

In all such cases, the Communication Procedures that follow should be employed.  

  • Parents and all those involved in their roles as spectators should understand their responsibilities to be encouragers of the team, supporters of the school and most importantly, representatives of Christ.
  • Spectators should remember that school athletics are learning experiences for the students and that mistakes are sometimes made.
  • Athletes from all sports should be praised in their attempts to improve themselves as athletes and as people.  In addition, appreciation for outstanding play by either team should be shown.
  • More specifically, spectators should be aware that it is a privilege to observe the game/match.  Respect should be shown to the opposing players, coaches, spectators and support groups.  Treat them as our guests.
  • Game officials and umpires should be treated with respect.  Understand that they, like you, are fallible and are doing their best to promote the student athlete.  Admire their willingness to participate in full view of the public and be eager to accept their authority.

Communication Procedures

The Notre Dame Prep Athletic Department is committed to communicating the goals and objectives of the athletic program, eligibility rules and expectations of our athletes.  If more information is required or should a concern arise during an athletic season, the procedure listed below should be followed:

  1. The student athlete should advocate for themselves and speak directly with his or her coach.
  2. If further clarification is required the parent should then contact the coach for a meeting with the player and parents. No meeting will take place without the student athlete in the room. (it is advised that no contact between parent and coach be made until, at least, the day after the incident/event in question – ( 24 hour rule)
  3. If the issue remains unresolved, the parent should then communicate his/her concerns with to the athletic director.