Reduction in sports teams a reflection of difficult economic times
Aug. 23, 2012
Due to budget reductions, the Watervliet High School Athletics program has placed five sports teams on hiatus for the 2012-13 year.
The school will not field teams this year for girls fall tennis, boys and girls bowling, winter cheerleading and boys spring tennis.
The district will consider reinstating these teams for the 2013-14 school year based on projected student participation and available funding. The district will make intramural bowling opportunities available this year depending on student interest.
The reduced athletic offerings were among many cuts the district made to balance the 2012-13 budget. Other reductions included the elimination of six classroom teachers, four teaching assistants and two hall monitors. The district eliminated its elementary summer school program and new student enrollment in BOCES programs, such as New Visions and Tech Valley High. The district also eliminated two bus routes by consolidating a number of stops. Outside custodial service, guidance summer hours and several BOCES services were reduced as well, however, no “in-house” educational programs were cut.
The district was approached by a small group of community residents interested in raising money specifically to reinstate bowling this year. However, the district was not presented with a fundraising plan nor was a memorandum of agreement signed per Board of Education policy.
“We appreciate the good intentions of our bowling parents, but given our current fiscal constraints, the district cannot afford to supplement bowling this year, and can not accept donations to reinstate a team for 2012-13,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Lori S. Caplan said. “The district relies heavily on the good will of donors and the hard work of sports boosters; however, all fundraising efforts must be agreed upon in advance.”
Individuals or groups interested in raising funds for district programs should first approach the appropriate department or building principal to work out a fundraising plan. Agreements with fundraisers must be approved by the superintendent and the Board of Education.