How Well Do You Know Your Child's Basketball Coach? -by Brian Schofield http://www.hoopskills.com
This evening I was talking with a friend of mine and we talked about the thousands and thousands of coaches in the country who are working with our kids. Specifically we were talking about how much we don't know about them. Hopefully we aren't the parents that just drop our kids off at the gym without wondering anything about the people working with our kids. Do the coaches have to have any sort of certification to do what they do? Do the coaches have to go through any background check to make sure that they are the type of people that we are comfortable leaving our kids around? When I was growing up we took an AAU trip to Las Vegas to play in a tournament. During the games our coach had his son go into our rooms and take stuff. He took cassette players, cash, watches and anything else of value. Fortunately we caught him and the stuff was returned. We found out later the coach had a prior record and it could have been avoided had we really looked into it. Should there have been something that the AAU could have done to prevent him from even coaching us? I think so. I'm a big proponent of coaches passing background checks or at least making their backgrounds available to the parents to make the decisions.
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I'm also a proponent for coaches certifying in some way to prove or show that they are able to actually have the title of "coach". To me, not everyone who holds a whistle earns the honor of being called a coach. I believe that the individual representing my child should represent what I want my child to stand for. So when I ask who is coaching our kids I'm really pushing to get solid individuals working with our young people. I'll never take away someone's ability to change but I'm a believer in full disclosure. I have more respect for the person who admits a mistake and shows a history of change. I want coaches who our kids can emulate and want to be like. Coaches should be solid examples to our kids in the way they show respect to the game and to the players. When I drop my kid off at practice I want to know exactly who is going to be working with them and I don't think that is too much to ask. I'd love to see leagues step up and take necessary steps to making sure that each coach has a background check done on them. This is only to create a situation where full disclosure can take place. If I have a coach who had an issue 20 years ago but has shown nothing but positives since then I'm going to treat that situation differently but I still want to know what is out there. The same goes with the guys who referee. I want to know who is out there and I don't think it is too much for the league to provide that. It all starts with someone asking these types of questions because I guarantee I'm not the only one who has had an experience like the one I shared.
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