Parent & Student Athletic Handbook
This handbook is designed to give basic rules, regulations and important information concerning Temple Christian School’s athletic program. These rules and regulations are not intended to punish, nor to restrict, but to protect and uphold the integrity of Temple Christian School and its sports program. These guidelines will help the students, parents, faculty and administration to be more aware of procedures and regulations concerning TCS athletics.
Please keep in mind that this handbook is simply a guide and not totally inclusive. As situations arise throughout the school year, the administration will make decisions concerning those occurrences. The rules included are basic and are to be used in conjunction with other regulations in the school program.
Your participation in the athletic program is completely voluntary. It is not required for graduation. However, those of you who try out and are chosen must understand the commitment you have made. You not only represent yourselves, but you participate as representatives of your fellow students, family, school, church and community. For this reason, you must assume certain ethical and moral obligations and standards of citizenship and conduct. You must be willing to set goals of excellence and invest the energy and time necessary to attain those goals.
When you are willing to discipline yourself, make the necessary sacrifices, and strive for the highest level of performance of which you are capable, the result will be excellence. You will have the privilege of participating in a program that will be a lifelong source of satisfaction and pride.
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PHILOSOPHY OF ATHLETICS
Temple Christian School offers a complete athletic program in grades 6-12 including 11-man tackle football, basketball, baseball, softball, track, and volleyball.
The primary purpose of the athletic program at Temple Christian School is to help young men and women become more Christ-like. Athletics provides us with the incredible opportunity and responsibility of molding young lives by teaching positive, Christian values.
Participation in TCS athletics prepares a person for the Christian life in a society based on competition and excellence. Our athletes who commit themselves to excellence and learn to deal with success and failure on the playing field will carry this ability with them throughout their lives. The goal of our athletic program is the development and welfare of Christian character traits. It is intended develop an athlete physically, emotionally, intellectually, and socially and in so doing, bring the young person closer to God.
Physically, athletics provides our athletes with the opportunity to develop to their full potential, including the ability to go beyond the limits of normal endurance.
Emotionally, our athletes learn to control themselves under pressure. In a single contest, the athlete may need to deal with elation, frustration, anger, and fear. He or she must learn to win gracefully and to bounce back in the face of defeat.
Intellectually, our athletes develop and exercise their minds as they learn and use the rules, strategies, and plays of the game. They develop mental toughness when they learn that their bodies can withstand considerable punishment.
Finally, our athletes develop socially. They learn to submit to authority as they interact with the coaching staff and operate under the regulations of the game. Through team play they learn cooperation, communication and loyalty as the team strives toward a common goal.
Our primary goal is to develop a program that is not only competitive, but would ultimately glorify Jesus Christ and be a positive experience for all who participate in it.
1. GLORIFY GOD
This has to be our ultimate goal. We are called to bring honor and glory to our Creator. We do this by imitating and reflecting his image in our thoughts, words and actions. No matter what we accomplish – how many games and championships we win, how many records we set, how many individual honors we attain – if we do not glorify God we are failures and all of our accomplishments are worthless.
2. HONOR OTHERS
Always treat others with dignity and respect. Failure to achieve this goal will devastate even the most talented team. Every member of the team and staff deserves to be respected and valued as a member of the team. Any team will always have a diverse group of personalities and individual players will tend to gravitate to people they are most like. The danger in this is that cliques may form and rivalries and jealousies begin to tear the team apart. No matter how different members of a team are they CAN be bound together by one common cause: THE DESIRE TO WIN! If this desire is strong enough in an individual, he or she will overlook negative feelings about a teammate and value him or her as an important part of the team.
3. COMMIT TO EXCELLENCE
Excellence is achieved by striving for perfection. We will urgently pursue perfection in all we do with all our might. It may not ever be possible to achieve perfection. But if we relentlessly pursue perfection, we will achieve excellence. Nothing will be done half-way, half-heartedly or indifferently. In everything we do, on the field or on the court, in the classroom or in the home, in our public or private lives, we will compete to excel and to win.
4. WORTHY CONDUCT
Always operate with pride, integrity and class. Our conduct should be above reproach in everything we do.
You should have pride in being a member of the Eagle Athletic Program and in TCS. Team and school pride will bind you together uniting you with a common cause: to bring honor to TCS. This will also result in treating others (teammates, cheerleaders, other students, teachers, etc.) with respect and dignity.
Your moral integrity is the most priceless thing you possess. It is being able to say “yes” and “no” to the right and wrong things even when it is not the popular thing to do. It is being true to yourself and being honest with your teammates and coaches.
Class involves winning with honor and being gracious in a loss. It is keeping your poise and your mouth shut when the other team is talking trash and taking cheap shots. It is refusing to make excuses or blaming others (refs, teammates, coaches, etc.) for our failures. A state champion that lacks class is like a diamond ring in a pig’s snout.
5. WORK ETHIC
This involves more than just doing what is required. This is an attitude that recognizes every practice, every drill, every lift, every sprint, every film and every meeting as an opportunity to get better. You don’t do things right once in a while, you do things right ALL THE TIME. No matter how little or insignificant the task (e.g. being on time, being dressed out, etc.) you make the commitment to do it right and to the best of your ability. Eighty-five percent of people take short cuts and look for the easy way. The other 15% sacrifice to do things right ALL THE TIME. THEY ARE THE WINNERS!
We want to be a program that makes no excuses. When a loser is corrected, he or she gives you an excuse. When winners are corrected, they keep their mouths shut and resolve within themselves to correct their mistakes. This is the greatest display of leadership I know. An athlete who refuses to be corrected is telling his or her teammates that they are perfect and know better than their coach. Their actions encourage others to resist correction and deny the team the opportunity to improve.
WE WILL MAKE NO EXCUSES FOR FAILING TO ACHIEVE THESE GOALS WE HAVE SET FOR OUR TEAM!
The conduct of TCS athletes should always demonstrate integrity and sportsmanship. In every situation, our athletes must remember that they are representing Jesus Christ as well as Temple Christian School.
Any misconduct by a student athlete that is determined by the head coach and school administration to be detrimental to the athletic program or school will result in counseling by the head coach, athletic director and a school administrator with possible suspension.
A display of unsportsmanlike conduct toward an official or opponent will result in removal from the game. The use of profanity during a practice or contest will result in counseling by the head coach and possible suspension. An ejection from an athletic contest will result in a one game suspension and the athlete will be required to pay the fine due to TAPPS.
Use of any illegal drug, alcohol or tobacco will result in a 30-day suspension from all practices and games.
Unexcused absence from scheduled practice or game will result in: Suspension for one contest following the violation.
Excused absences (illness, family emergencies, school trips, or family vacations that have been cleared through the coach ahead of time) will not result in any suspension. However, parents and athletes need to be aware that coaches will start and play the players that give the team the best possible chance of winning. Athletes who miss practices and/or games may not be as well prepared to contribute to the team's success as those athletes who are present. Coaches will use practices and games to evaluate their personnel and determine playing time.
As found in the Co-Curricular Contract this is the priority ladder in case of conflicts with the school calendar:
NEVER question an official about a call, whether you are participating in or observing a game.
When cheering for a TCS team, only cheer FOR the Eagles. There is NEVER any reason to cheer against the other team. Athletes at TCS should never be involved in taunting or “talking trash” to an opponent. Noisemakers are prohibited at athletic contests held in field houses and/or gymnasiums. Body paint and like decoration shall not be permitted by players or spectators.
Never laugh at or ridicule another school or athlete from another team. Always treat the visiting school as guests before, during and after the games. Play hard and play to win, but with an attitude of Christian sportsmanship.
Athletes at TCS should never start or contribute in any way to a fight on or off the field or court. No player should ever leave the bench during a fight.
Never abuse or misuse the facilities of another school. Remember, you are a guest.
Any athlete, student, parent or fan who is ejected from an athletic contest will be required to pay the appropriate fine to TAPPS and will be suspended from attending and/or participating in the next scheduled contest.
Athletes will travel to and from all contests in transportation provided or designated by TCS. An athlete may leave a contest with parents only.
SCHOOL ACADEMIC AND ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENTS
The grading periods are the first nine weeks, first semester, and third nine weeks. Progress reports do not impact eligibility.
Suspension will begin on the day report cards are issued.
Grades are evaluated by the principal and athletic director three weeks after report cards are issued. If the student is no longer failing the class, eligibility is restored.
If, after the three week ineligibility period, the athlete is still failing that class, he or she will be ineligible for one additional week. Eligibility will be restored if the student is no longer failing the class. In the event that the student is still failing the class, grades will then be checked at one-week intervals until the student is passing.
A student must be in before 9:00 am in order to participate in an activity that day. An exception would be made if the student had an approved medical appointment, funeral (etc). In this case the student must present a signed statement from the Doctor or the parent/guardian.
Any student who is ineligible for athletic competition due to grades or detentions cannot miss any classes or school days to attend an athletic event.
Injury - Any injury which requires medical attention must be reported to the head coach and athletic director. The athletic director will file a Student Accident Report for insurance purposes. Temple Christian School carries a policy that covers expenses for injuries that occur during a game or practice that are not covered by parents’ personal insurance policy. Accident Claim Forms may be picked up at the administration office.
Doctor's Notes - A student that has been injured and has had medical treatment cannot participate again until the date indicated by the student's doctor.
Mandatory water breaks – TCS practices will incorporate mandatory water breaks scheduled at least every 20 minutes.
Constant availability of water – in addition to scheduled water breaks, water will be made available to our athletes during drill work, scrimmaging and throughout the entire practice period.
Modification of practices – TCS will use NCAA guidelines concerning heat and humidity to adjust practices. We may also modify practice length, number of water breaks or we may even move the practice indoors.
Gradual acclimatization to hot weather – The first three varsity practices are conducted without pads. Once pad practice begins, coaches will often have the athletes remove helmet and shoulder pads during drill work that does not require full pads.
Coaches will constantly check for signs and symptoms of heat distress and will be trained to handle heat emergencies. Practice may be shortened or even cancelled under extreme conditions.
In the event of thunderstorm warnings, TCS will use a lightning warning indicator to determine whether or not to cancel practice.
All athletes in ALL sports must wear TCS Workout Gear for ALL practices. Students may wear SST gear purchased from the school store, SST award shirts, any current year coach-issued apparel or any previous year playoff apparel.
PARTICIPATION IN SST (Speed and Strength Training)
SST is the strength and conditioning program for TCS athletes. Any athlete participating in football, volleyball, basketball, baseball, softball or track must participate in the SST program for the entire school year. Extensive research has revealed that weight training significantly reduces injury and enhances athletic ability. Any athlete who withdraws from athletics and quits the SST program and then desires to return to athletics at a later date will be required to make up the days missed in SST through extra conditioning determined by the athletic director and head coach.
The middle school SST program emphasizes form, technique and discipline while stressing low weights and high repetitions. This protects young athletes whose bone growth plates are still developing. The high school SST program emphasizes developing a strong “core” to develop the overall athlete as well as speed, agility and explosiveness.
Consistent participation in the program is vital to achieve lasting results. Therefore, all participants will lift before they attend their sport practice. Athletes will not lift on game days. During vacation and summer the weight room will be open during specific days and hours to help athletes continue in their improvement.
Middle School - In the 6th, 7th and 8th grade every athlete will receive coaching instruction in practice and will play in every game (including tournaments, championships, etc.) in which he/she is in uniform. Some of the reasons a player might not be allowed to suit up for a particular game are: discipline problem or missed practices. In the 6th, 7th and 8th grades, participation takes greater precedence over winning games.
High School - At the varsity level the emphasis is on making a commitment to excellence as a team. Therefore, we will make every effort to play as many athletes as possible without jeopardizing the team’s opportunity to win. Playing time at the varsity level is determined by the coaching staff and is based upon player evaluation in practices and games.
- The number of athletes that come out for the particular sport
- Limited number of teams
- Limited number of coaches
- Limited amount of gym availability
The decision on whether or not cuts will occur will be on a sport-by-sport, season-by-season basis. There will be no cuts in football and track.
QUITTING A SPORT
The TCS Athletic Department believes that character is not built by quitting and encourages students to persevere through adversity. We also desire that TCS athletes see themselves as a part of the team even when injuries or academic ineligibility may restrict their participation in practices and games.
An injured player is expected to attend all practices and games as if they were healthy.
Any student athlete who quits a team will sit out the next two consecutive sports seasons. (Ex. An athlete that quits basketball must sit out the following spring and fall sport.)
There will be a two week trial period at the beginning of the season during which an athlete can choose not to participate in a sport without it resulting in the penalty stated above. Once this trial period has passed or tryouts and team selections have been completed, quitting should never be considered by the athlete or family.
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All games and locations will be on the sports website. Directions to the games will also be on the website. In event of late game cancellations (due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances), students will be notified as soon as possible and will be encouraged to call their parents to notify them of the change in schedule.
TCS does not allow students to drive private vehicles to school-related activities in which they are participating. Athletes must ride the bus to all practices and competitions. Students may ride home from games WITH THEIR OWN PARENTS ONLY. Exceptions to this policy must be approved in advance by the headmaster. If the parent is taking their child home, the parent needs to go to the coach after the game and sign next to the student’s name on the roster.
Student-athletes will have the opportunity to order a letter jacket 3 times during the year. Jacket sizing and orders will be taken after the completion of each sports season: Fall (November), Winter (March) and Spring (June or August).
Clear communication between parents, athletes and coaches will facilitate a positive athletic experience for all. Listed below are a number of steps to enhance communication. It is important also to remember that the first link in the communication network is the one established between coach and athlete. It is vital that your child takes the initiative to speak directly with his/her coach about any topic and before a parent/coach conversation is scheduled.
Step One: Student-Athlete Contacts Coach – The student-athlete should present the conflict/issue to the coach as soon as possible. It is always best for students to become their own advocates. It is expected that the majority of concerns will be resolved at this first meeting.
Step Two: Parent Contacts Coach – If needed the parent contact the coach directly. Parents are asked to refrain from contacting the coach just before, during or after a game or practice. The parents should contact the coach via email or phone call to set an appointment to meet with the coach.
Step Three: Parent Contacts Athletic Director – If a satisfactory solution/resolution is not reached through direct contact with the coach, the student and/or parent should contact the Athletic Director. The coach should be informed that this contact is going to be made. As needed, a meeting may be scheduled involving all concerned parties in an attempt to reach a satisfactory resolution. The AD will respond to student athletes and parents in a timely manner as to the disposition of their concerns.
Step Four: Contacting the Principal – If there is still not a satisfactory resolution, the student or parent may contact the High School Principal. The Athletic Director should be informed that this contact is going to be made. While there can be no guarantee that all parties will agree with all resolutions or findings, a thorough, respectful airing of different perceptions and experiences can lead to more productive relationships and clearer understandings in the future.
**Retribution – Students and parents must be confident that the voicing of an opinion or concern, using the proper forum and method, is not only free from penalty or retribution, but also is strongly encouraged. The Athletic Director and coaches are committed to insuring that, after a student or parent raises an issue or concern, there shall be no "retribution" in any form within the athletic department at TCS.
- Philosophy of TCS Athletics
- Evaluation of your child’s strengths/weaknesses in that sport
- Recommendations for improvement of sport skills
- Location and times of all practices and games
- Explanation of TCS athletic rules and procedures
- Team requirements (i.e., special equipment, fees, off-season conditioning recommendations)
- Procedures if your child is injured during participation
- Discipline that results in denying your child a participation opportunity
- Concerns that are expressed directly to the coach
- Specific health concerns or injuries dealing with your child
- Notification of any practice or game schedule conflicts well in advance
- Specific questions regarding TCS athletics and or parent expectations
As your child continues their participation in the TCS athletic program they will experience some very rewarding moments. It is also important to remember that there will be times when adversity and disappointment inevitably occur. At these times discussion with the coach is encouraged.
- The mental and physical treatment of your child
- Ways to help your child improve
- Concerns about your child’s behavior
It is very difficult to accept that your child may not play as much as you, or perhaps they, hoped. Coaches are professionals. They are charged to make judgment decisions based on what they believe is equitable and best for all the athletes involved. As you have read in the list above, certain items are open for discussion with your child’s coach. Other decision-making must be left in the hands of the coach assigned the responsibility of coaching your child’s team.
- Playing time
- Individual Position Assignments
- Team Strategy
- Play calling
- Other student-athletes
There are situations that may require a conference between the coach and parents. These conferences are encouraged. It is important that both parties involved have a clear understanding of the other’s position. When conferences are necessary, the following procedure should be followed to help promote a resolution to the issue of concern.
- Contact the coach by school phone or email to set an appointment
- Describe your specific areas of concern
- Limit your discussion to your own child’s issues. Do not discuss issues pertaining other athletes or parents unless they specifically involve your child
Please do not confront a coach before or after a game or practice. These can be emotional moments. Meetings of this nature are not likely to promote resolution.
- Call and set up an appointment with the athletic director to discuss the situation
- At this meeting the next appropriate steps can be determined
TIPS FOR PARENTS
BE SUPPORTIVE OF COACHES – In front of your child be supportive and positive of the coaches’ decisions. If you have problems with what the coach is doing, it is best to talk directly with the coach.
TEACH RESPECT FOR AUTHORITY – There will be times when you disagree with a coach or official but always remember they are trying their best and are trying to be fair. Show good sportsmanship by being positive.
LET THE COACH DO THE COACHING BUT YOU CAN DO SOME OF THE TEACHING – When your child is on the field or court, let the coach do the coaching. Shouting out instruction or criticism may hinder the overall experience of the student-athlete. You can teach sportsmanship and how to deal with success or failure. Develop their character and teach life skills that athletics and activities bring to the forefront.
MODEL GOOD SPORTSMANSHIP AT GAMES - When cheering for a TCS team, only cheer FOR the Eagles. There is NEVER any reason to cheer against or “taunt” the other team. Never question or “boo” an official about a call. Negative comments and gestures of displeasure toward the coach, visiting team, or officials, only undermine the efforts of all involved. Always treat the visiting school as guests before, during and after the games. Cheer for the Eagles to play hard and play to win, but with an attitude of Christian sportsmanship.
HELP YOUR CHILDREN LEARN THROUGH FAILURE – The way your child handles failure can help them face the certain disappointment life will throw them in the future. The worst time for you as a parent to give advice is immediately after a disappointment. Encourage and support them, but allow your child to cope in their own way.
LISTEN TO YOUR CHILD, BUT STAY RATIONAL – Always support and listen to your child, but remember to stay rational until you have investigated the situation.
BE MINDFUL OF YOUR ROLE AS A ROLE MODEL – Take a good honest look at your attitude, actions and reactions in the athletic arena. These actions are a big cue to your child and to the others around you.
SHOW UNCONDITIONAL LOVE – The most important thing…show your child you love them, win or lose.
TIPS FOR STUDENTS
TCS ATHLETIC PROGRAM
The following sports are currently offered at TCS:
Football 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity
Basketball 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity
Baseball 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity
Track 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity
Volleyball 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity
Basketball 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity
Softball 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity
Track 6th 7th 8th JV Varsity