City League, WPIAL merger still far off
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Any potential merger between the WPIAL and the City League won't be coming until 2013 at the earliest.
Until then, there appears to plenty of other athletic reforms -- and reform discussions -- to keep the Pittsburgh Public Schools Board of Education busy.
Jake House, the school district's new student services director of athletics and head of its athletic overhaul committee, presented the committee's sweeping recommendations to the board Tuesday evening in Oakland.
But one of the most notable recommendations -- the dissolution of the century-old City League and merging the league's teams into the WPIAL -- was listed under "Things that we want to do but may have to wait" in House's PowerPoint presentation.
Any change to league structure would have to come after revamped guidelines for hiring coaches and an effort to improve facilities, according to House. Also, a vote of all PIAA districts is needed to merge the City League with the WPIAL.
"On the big issue of City League or non-City League, I want to give that one some more thought, and, frankly, get more information," Pittsburgh Public Schools Superintendent Linda Lane said.
"What would it mean, in terms of what time kids would have to leave in the afternoon to go to games• What would our costs be for the transportation• What about our families who don't have access to a car• How do they get to watch their daughter play basketball if it's not here in Pittsburgh• Those are some of the things we need to think about."
Discussion also may be lengthy regarding several of the more costly recommendations -- the largest of which is the addition of athletic directors.
Currently, Pittsburgh Public Schools has 53 teachers from elementary through high school levels who work as part-time faculty managers or activity managers. The overhaul committee recommends eliminating those positions and adding nine full-time athletic directors, though the cost would be roughly $450,000.
Still, many recommendations are likely to be approved by the board over the summer -- largely the ones that would raise the district's Title IX compliance. Those include administering students a Title IX survey and engaging community organizations to reach out to female athletes.
"Obviously, the Title IX issues, we have to get those taken care of," Lane said. "We have to expedite them, and I don't think there's a lot of discussion of whether we're going to do that or not."
One heavily debated recommendation was a change to the district's academic eligibility policy.
Currently, Pittsburgh Public Schools students must have a 2.0 grade-point average to participate in extracurricular activities. The change would add an intervention program to give students with a 1.50 to 1.99 average a chance to raise their average in the following nine weeks before being declared ineligible.
Board member Mark Brentley Sr. was strongly opposed to the proposed change. He said he would like the eligibility baseline raised to 2.5 -- the same average required for the district's popular Pittsburgh Promise scholarship program.
"We're not consistent," Brentley said. "Let's say to participate in our athletic program, we're raising the bar, and we've got scholar-athletes on the floor -- not athletes trying to be scholars."
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penguins notebook: Bortuzzo feeling ‘really, really good,’ but still out of lineup
- Steelers notebook: No-huddle gets limited use vs. Texans
- Central Valley girls win 3rd straight PIAA golf title
- Steelers’ Pouncey, brother won’t be charged in July fracas
- MLB notebook: Pirates’ McCutchen named Sporting News All-Star
- Nearing season’s midpoint, Steelers still have issues to sort out
- Buffalo Township grandma pleads guilty to selling hundreds of pounds of weed
- Police: New Ken drug suspect, Brandon Allen, used wrong name
- CDC: Pennsylvania to expand Ebola monitoring
- Officials identify witness to Port Authority bus crash after releasing photo
- Bomb threat found at Franklin Regional High School