Would you let your son play high school field hockey? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 05:38 PM
 
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If he's comfortable doing it I see no reason why not!

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#62 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 06:13 PM
 
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Something that may have been lost in the discussion and perhaps the OP can consider is just how lucky this boy has been given how much he is clearly committed to the sport. I believe only a very small number of states would actually even give him any opportunity of playing. Most states would not allow what has happened here and I don't even think field hockey is played in all the states even by girls. So for the young man to move from Europe and end up in a state where he has a chance of continuing to play is quite lucky in itself.

I wonder too if this was a bit of a rushed decision. Maybe the OP can answer this, but did he really give any other sports a try before deciding to continue with field hockey to this degree. Perhaps this was an opportunity to try other sports and maybe find something new that wouldn't have been so non-conformist. Not that I am against non-conforming, but he could have perhaps given something else a try this year and then decided ahead of summer training camp if he wanted to try out for the field hockey team and all that comes with it. This may have given himself some more breathing room and even forewarned the coach so that she could better advise. This has sort of been put on her plate out of the blue and as others have said, including the OP, it's not a simple case for her of playing him or not; she has district and state considerations to make as well. From all that has been said I think she's actually done a good job so far.

I hope it works out for your cousin
Why should he have to consider another sport? Esspecially since this is a sport that is "familar" to him and his home country?
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#63 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 06:32 PM
 
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Maybe though what is really needed is a push for a co-ed or male team. It would take a lot of work to get it going and might not be in time for your nephew to play on, but it could be a really good thing. It wouldn't have to be part of the school team, it could be a club.

Adding another team sport in high school is not that easy. Under Title Nine my high school district had to provide the same number of sports teams for both boys and girls. When the boys wanted to add a volleyball team another team had to be added for girls as well.

Also schools already are severely underfunded - financing another athletic team, including paying a coach, purchasing uniforms, providing transportation, etc, is practically impossible.

I agree that looking into club athletics is a good idea if your nephew decides that the school team is not working out for him.
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#64 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 06:36 PM
 
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I believe only a very small number of states would actually even give him any opportunity of playing. Most states would not allow what has happened here and I don't even think field hockey is played in all the states even by girls.
At the moment all states prohibit preventing a child from playing on a sports team based on sex in any school that accepts federal funding. 17 states have taken a step further and enacted laws that also include private schools.

In Illinois the law states:

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No student shall, solely by reason of that person's sex, be denied equal access to physical education and interscholastic athletic programs or comparable programs supported from school district funds.
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#65 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 06:37 PM
 
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OP said she was in PA -- I believe PIAA rules make any transfer student sit out their first year (to eliminate people transferring just for the purpose of playing a sport).
If that's truly the rule then it's absurd and punishes kids whose families move for jobs or other reasons. In my state (GA) if you transfer schools then there are ways to get eligibility to play (prove you moved, claim financial hardship as a reason to leave a private school etc). I'm pretty sure a move from another country would make you eligible here. These rules are meant to protect kids against teams recruiting. Obviously that's not the case here.

On the OP's question about the uniform during the school day. That seems like something decided at the school level and it sounds like the coach is sympathetic. I would suggest he just wears the jersey with his jeans or whatever pants he's wearing that day. That's what all the sports teams did at my HS (except the cheerleaders who wore the whole uniform.)

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#66 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 06:42 PM
 
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Why should he have to consider another sport? Esspecially since this is a sport that is "familar" to him and his home country?
Because the sport he wants to play isn't a sport that is readily available to boys. In about 90% of the states this would not even be an issue because he wouldn't have even got this far. That he ended up in a state which does allow boys to play on girl's teams (with certain rules) has given him that option to choose field hockey. But in another state he would have had to have chose another sport. What if the boy had wanted to play cricket? He would have been even harder pressed to find a team.

That he made a decision and chose to continue with field hockey is fine, but clearly there are some requirements associated with this choice which he is going to have to live with. Given that it seems he may not actually play a game this season anyway, I think he had more to gain by waiting and keeping his options open. Now he has gone ahead and joined the team and dressed in the uniform he will have to live with that decision which could follow him through school even if he or the district decide that he is never going to play for the school. I just think waiting until next year could have given everyone involved time for preparation.
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#67 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 08:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My cousin said he didn't get teased "that much" today although I didn't really press what that much meant.

I should perhaps clear something up here as I re-read some of the posts. I know I have come across as against the idea that he has to wear a girl's uniform/skirt to play, but that doesn't mean that I am not supporting him. Actually it's been the opposite and I have some mixed feelings over it. I did a lot of researching on the web first admittedly looking for loopholes to try and get him out of it and actually to see if it was all true too, but then latter as I found more and more examples I just collected them and printed stuff off and made links to show him that look, even if you do have to do this and go through with it, it's not just you, there are quite a few boys in the same position. He told me that this was an important factor in his deciding to go through with it. So now if it does backfire I will feel pretty guilty about that too since if I had kept schtum about it he might not have done it.

Someone mentioned the Olympic team too. I have actually written to some people involved at the national level and also some guy in the UK who has connections to the England national team. But the problem is they told me that basically there is a disconnect between the national system and the schools system. Basically schools run field hockey and I think someone told me it's even harder for a guy to get involved in field hockey in college, but at that point they can usually join clubs if there are any in the area. Someone said about how clubs at the school sort of age are just for girls and this seems to be right too. People have said that I/we should start a club. But I am not a field hockey nut LOL, just obsessed over what I see as injustice that has got me fired up. Plus I don't think it's that easy and to get boys interested too. The funny thing someone told me is that because so few boys play, the good ones have a really really really high chance of making the olympic team which of course is not true for the girls.

Not only do the schools run field hockey of course, but it's a lot of women who want to probably keep the sport as exclusive to girl's running it. That's the only reason I can see why they insist on the kilts and skirts for guys.

I will ask my cousin if anyone told him anything about Friday because he hasn't said anything about that. He has a practice tomorrow so he can maybe find out then. The top would certainly draw attention to it but probably not so humiliating as the skirt would.

He is a good kid and quite strong minded, plus he is a bit introverted too. If he lost any friends over this I don't think he'd be that upset to be honest. Not that he has really made any close friends yet anyway, so in that sense maybe this was a better time to do this.

I get what the one person who said about maybe he should have waited said. I think things just happened a bit quicker than I expected anyway and maybe he should but I think he knew that he wanted to play anyway. It's not about playing on the team or playing competitively as such for him right now but just playing the sport which he enjoys. He is happy even with practice at the moment.


What I find odd, maybe this is another question for somewhere on the forums, and I asked this on the field hockey site but never got an answer... lot's of women have campaigned in sport to get away from having to wear skirts over the years and have equal rights to shorts. Yet here we have a situation where not only do they actually cling onto the kilts/skirts but expect boys to wear them too. I asked why there was such a strong tie to the kilts/skirts and no one really knew.
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#68 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 10:03 PM
 
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My cousin said he didn't get teased "that much" today although I didn't really press what that much meant.

I should perhaps clear something up here as I re-read some of the posts. I know I have come across as against the idea that he has to wear a girl's uniform/skirt to play, but that doesn't mean that I am not supporting him. Actually it's been the opposite and I have some mixed feelings over it. I did a lot of researching on the web first admittedly looking for loopholes to try and get him out of it and actually to see if it was all true too, but then latter as I found more and more examples I just collected them and printed stuff off and made links to show him that look, even if you do have to do this and go through with it, it's not just you, there are quite a few boys in the same position. He told me that this was an important factor in his deciding to go through with it. So now if it does backfire I will feel pretty guilty about that too since if I had kept schtum about it he might not have done it.

Someone mentioned the Olympic team too. I have actually written to some people involved at the national level and also some guy in the UK who has connections to the England national team. But the problem is they told me that basically there is a disconnect between the national system and the schools system. Basically schools run field hockey and I think someone told me it's even harder for a guy to get involved in field hockey in college, but at that point they can usually join clubs if there are any in the area. Someone said about how clubs at the school sort of age are just for girls and this seems to be right too. People have said that I/we should start a club. But I am not a field hockey nut LOL, just obsessed over what I see as injustice that has got me fired up. Plus I don't think it's that easy and to get boys interested too. The funny thing someone told me is that because so few boys play, the good ones have a really really really high chance of making the olympic team which of course is not true for the girls.

Not only do the schools run field hockey of course, but it's a lot of women who want to probably keep the sport as exclusive to girl's running it. That's the only reason I can see why they insist on the kilts and skirts for guys.

I will ask my cousin if anyone told him anything about Friday because he hasn't said anything about that. He has a practice tomorrow so he can maybe find out then. The top would certainly draw attention to it but probably not so humiliating as the skirt would.

He is a good kid and quite strong minded, plus he is a bit introverted too. If he lost any friends over this I don't think he'd be that upset to be honest. Not that he has really made any close friends yet anyway, so in that sense maybe this was a better time to do this.

I get what the one person who said about maybe he should have waited said. I think things just happened a bit quicker than I expected anyway and maybe he should but I think he knew that he wanted to play anyway. It's not about playing on the team or playing competitively as such for him right now but just playing the sport which he enjoys. He is happy even with practice at the moment.


What I find odd, maybe this is another question for somewhere on the forums, and I asked this on the field hockey site but never got an answer... lot's of women have campaigned in sport to get away from having to wear skirts over the years and have equal rights to shorts. Yet here we have a situation where not only do they actually cling onto the kilts/skirts but expect boys to wear them too. I asked why there was such a strong tie to the kilts/skirts and no one really knew.
I know that when I was field hockey player, we loved our kilts, because they were traditional. But like I said earlier, ours were actually kilts, not skirts. I don't think I would have found it as important if they had been more "skirt" like.

 
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#69 of 73 Old 09-30-2009, 11:55 PM
 
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That he ended up in a state which does allow boys to play on girl's teams (with certain rules) has given him that option to choose field hockey. But in another state he would have had to have chose another sport.
Why choose another sport? He may not have been able to play anything at all. Some people like to play sports, and pick the ones they like best. Some people like to play a sport, and if it weren't available, they wouldn't play anything. I don't know which category the OP's cousin (it is a cousin, yes?) falls into, but if he's the "field hockey or nothing" type, then waiting wouldn't have accomplished anything, anyway.

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#70 of 73 Old 10-01-2009, 03:01 AM
 
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Why choose another sport? He may not have been able to play anything at all. Some people like to play sports, and pick the ones they like best. Some people like to play a sport, and if it weren't available, they wouldn't play anything. I don't know which category the OP's cousin (it is a cousin, yes?) falls into, but if he's the "field hockey or nothing" type, then waiting wouldn't have accomplished anything, anyway.
That's a reasonable argument if he is all or nothing. Even then, I think the one thing he would have still accomplished or benefited from would have been that everyone else could have been better prepared for him coming into the team. I feel some sympathy (perhaps that is too strong a word) for the coach here. She has been preparing for the season with an all girl team, the season starts with her all girl team and then however far we are into the season (I don't know) a boy suddenly turns up and says he wants to join the team. Despite any debate about the rights, wrongs, merits etc of that, it still appears to be something that stirs angst because of everything else that goes with that boy joining the team. Again it's not a judgment of whether that is valid, it is just how it is. So the coach has to deal with that as best she can and perhaps keep the team as best focused as she can through it as well. Meanwhile, it seems anyway, the boy is benched for the season, so it achieved what? At best he can maybe face some issues now that he might have faced next year. But perhaps instead he could have maybe practiced with them anyway without committing like that and still kept his own options open. I am not trying to suggest he made a wrong choice in the end here, just questioning the timing of that actual decision.
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#71 of 73 Old 10-01-2009, 03:13 AM
 
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the skirt does not bother me if he is up for it.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#72 of 73 Old 10-01-2009, 08:37 AM
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After following this thread since it started I am rather amazed at (for lack of a better word) the drama surrounding this boys decision to play. I just don't remember there being any real issue when we had a boy on our high school field hockey team (this is in Maine) and yes, he did wear the kilt.

I am glad he is giving it a go, I am surprised a bit that he is being teased for it as well. The boy who played on our field hockey never heard a word about it, in fact some of the guys remarked to him how lucky he was to be with all the field hockey girls all the time

I guess just based on my own personal experience I really feel like everyone around him is making a way bigger deal out of the situation than is necessary. I also cannot believe regardless of transfer rules that he would have to sit out the entire first season. That sounds like crap to me. I moved to my high school a week before my freshman year started and I immediately joined the team and did not have to sit out the season even though the team had been practicing for a month prior to school starting.

At this point I would say stop worrying about him, he seems to be handling it well and I feel the bigger deal that his coach and you and everyone makes it the bigger deal it is going to be.
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#73 of 73 Old 10-01-2009, 09:33 AM
 
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