I need some advice. DD is on the JV basketball team. I am wondering what is typical in other schools. DD has practice 6 days a week. Although the time for practices may change, usually her practice is 5:30-7:30 or 6-8. She's had a few earlier practices, 3-5, but not since the first week of practice. Earlier practices are nice because it doesn't require me driving to the HS two times in one day. There is also busing for the practices that end at 5.
Last night's practice was 7:30-9. I told her to tell her coach that she would be unable to attend. When she told him, he got snippy with her. I am tired of running her over to the school and then back home, twice a day. It's not a full practice and in my opinion, practice shouldn't be until 9 at night. I understand that games may be that late but I don't feel that it is appropriate for practices to be that late. Her team has had the latest practice for the last 2 weeks, with the exception of the Saturday practice, which was the earliest (at 8 am). I am also annoyed that at her practice the day before, the coach was unable to be there because he is coaching another sport. The varsity coach ran the practice. For most of the practice, he made the JV team sit in the bleachers and watch the varsity girls practice.
Because DD's coach is coaching another sport, it feels as though his other team gets his full attention, and the girls JV team gets what's left over. DD says that when she tries to ask questions about the plays, he shushes her, except it's more like a "zzzpt" and he holds his hand up toward her face. In my opinion, this is so rude.
I have complained to the Athletic Director about all the late night practices. It's not only the driving back and forth with gas near $4/gallon in NYS but the exhaustion of late night practices. DH and I feel that school should come first, sports second. The Athletic Director is coming to my school to talk to me today about my concerns. He explained the challenges of scheduling 7 teams in 3 gyms and I do understand that that is one of the challenges of sports in a small school district. I am on the fence about bringing up the coach's rude behavior. I don't want my daughter to be punished for me speaking up for his rude behavior. However, I want my daughter to have an enjoyable basketball experience and right now, she isn't enjoying it. It feels like a lose-lose situation. I am sad for DD because she loves basketball.
I am not in a small district and those practice times don't seem that out of the ordinary to me. Our coaches have done a few things when they don't like the really late times. One is scheduling practice at a middle school. They still have to go after the middle school practices, but it is earlier than they could get in at the high school. Another is early morning practice, and I mean early - 5:00 or 5:30 to 7 or 7:15. Our school begins at 7:40.
Can your daughter car pool with someone else to share the driving so you don't have to make the extra trip every day?
Honestly, I know it may not be ideal for you to have to pick her up at 9 at night, but I don't see anything wrong with a practice being that late for HS. In fact, I think that practice schedule is not bad at all. Like another member said, some practices are real early in the morning, or go until really late (11ish) and 9 at night is not late. Also, I can understand why her coach was upset with her for not attending practice without a valid reason. Practice is a time to learn and run new plays, and without all team members present, that is difficult to do.
I think you and your daughter need to sit down and decide if you're willing to follow through with the commitment (and yes, it is a big commitment). If you are, great! If not, I suggest she quit sooner rather than later.
I think the strange hours of practice are common. Around here if there is only one gym then one team has to practice at 5:30 in the morning. (Some even have two a day practices.) Being on a team is a big commitment. 9:00 isn't all that late if you have ever had a child in a play. They practice until at least 10:00 or later sometimes. I do agree that you need to talk to the coach first. If the coach won't talk to you then go to the AD.
Various parents have tried to talk to the coach about the practices-he blows them off and tells them to talk to the Athletic Director or the Varsity coach. DD has decided to try to work out her issues with the coach on her own. I have already contacted the Athletic Director about the schedule because he creates the schedule for practices. He understands my concerns and said that he will attempt to schedule some earlier practices. It isn't fair that of the 7 teams, the girls JV team ALWAYS has the last practice. I am also trying to work out driving arrangements with some other parents so it's not such a burden.
Leecie-I'd never allow my child to play a sport if they had practice until 11. I feel that practice until 8/8:30 is late enough. Games are a special exception because of travel time.
That's how high school practices work. My kids were in performing arts (marching band, concert band, and theatre) and practices were always running past 9 on some nights. Concert band after school, 2 hour break (unless you were on stage crew then it was right to crew), then back to school for play practice from 6:30-9. Stage crew was up there on Saturdays from 9-1. During tech week for the plays, they didn't get out until after 10 or 10:30. Sound and lighting kids were there way past those times. Then they came home and did their homework.
They would not have traded it for anything.
Their friends in sports had similar schedules. The sad part is that all the sports kids went to practice, but not all played during the games. At least with band, everyone played. There is no "bench" in band!
Those times are pretty standard around here. Gym space is at a premium, and we have 3 gyms to use. That is shared among 7th grade boys and girls, 8th grade boys and girls, JV boys and girls, and Varsity boys and girls. I would much prefer the late practices to the early morning ones. You didn't say what grade your daughter is in, but varsity takes priority around here, everyone else gets the leftovers. 9pm is really not that late for a HS practice. The thing some parents forget when they get to HS is it is not a game of everyone plays. The best play the game, and others may always just go to practice and never get off the bench. But, they are getting physical activity at practice, socializing with peers, and learning skills they can carry with them into life. So, if you daughter will be a player someday, then you may just have to suck it up and deal with the situation. But, if she will only be a sitter, then you and she may want to decide if the time is worth it. Usually, by HS in a small school you have an indication of how this may play out. Although, some boys especially, can be late bloomers, and develop later.
Thank you for all the feedback. I guess things have changed since I was in HS. When I was in HS, the practices were rotated so that one team didn't always have the last practice. The only time DD's team has the earlier evening practice is when the boys' team is away at a game/scrimmage. I know for certain, I wouldn't allow my daughter to play sports if it meant she had to practice until 11 at night. I feel like the schools have forgotten the "student" in "student athlete".
Teens are supposed to get lots of sleep. The only people who need more are infants. I also will not be allowing dd to participate in sports when practices end at eleven pm on a weeknight. It is simply not healthy, especially since athletes nees that sleep to prevent injury. Muscles mend at night when you are asleep.
Nine is okay on some nights. With careful planning, a teenage child can get everything done beforehand and go to bed on time. Ideally school should start later and teens natural rhythms are made to stay up late, but since they are still expected to rise and shine and be at school by 7:30 or eight those late nights would pile up if the kid wants any personal time at all
Here sports are rotated such that practices don't run past seven and games that end late are on weekends. Our middle schools have their own gyms and high schools have girls and boys gyms. Practices rotate so that different groups are using the weight rooms, track, gyms, etc. Sports also do not overlap except for track and soccer and cheer leading with everything else. Volleyball runs with football, only basketball after those seasons are over, etc to make it easier to accomodate everyone.
Sadly, as a coach and as a basketball mom, I'm afraid you may have to suck this one up. Been there, done that, a bunch. We went through this a couple of years ago when 6 teams, 3rd grade through high school, had to share one gym. Our AD alternated late practices though, so one week the boys were 3-5, the next they were 7-9, which helped. I'm sure the coach, like me, can only do so much with what he is handed, and has little if any control over the schedule.
I don't have any real advice, but just wanted to say that our Varsity football team practiced from 12 am-3 am in the middle of summer!! The middle of the night!! Coach was trying to accommodate all the work schedules and everything else and that was the only time. THAT I would've been upset about!
It's normal. I've played, coached at the hs level, and am now a parent of 2 players. If I had a player who missed a practice just because the parent didn't want to drive them, it'd be considered unexcused and they'd have to deal with the consequences of that. I make 1 to 6 trips to our schools some days and that's after I drive 70 miles round trip to work.
When I was a freshman, we could only get gym space from 5:30-7:30 at night in our middle school gym. :-(. Our 7th grade boys are practicing at 6am this year....YUCK! It's just one of those things you have to deal with.
As wife of a coach and mother of two varsity basketball players, this is not out of the ordinary at all. This is one reason why we decided to move 5 min from the school. If I was the coach I would be irritated too.
I coach, and JV gets the short end of the stick. There is limited practice space and you have to fit in Girls and Boys Varsity and JV bball (there's 4 teams) plus wrestling and cheerleading (JV and Var). That's 7 teams. You have to work practices around games. You have to do it all between 3-10pm. It's a daunting task, at best.
Should the coach be "shushing" the girls like that? No. Him telling you to talk to the Varsity Coach or the AD may simply be b/c he does not have any pull when it comes to scheduling practice times and those are the two people who do.