Want to play? Got 75 bucks?

Andrew Hanley

Each of these RB athletes paid $75 dollars to be on the field at the game vs. Lemont.

Cameron Kritikos, Sports Manager

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Last spring, when the referendum was not passed by the Riverside Brookfield community, many changes to the school were expected. One unexpected change was added to all athletic programs at RB. Starting with the fall season of 2011, all athletes are required to pay $75 dollars per sport to participate in that sport.

 Not $75 a year.

 $75 a sport.

 Students who choose to participate in multiple sports will now have to pay over $100 to play, possibly even $225 for the rare three-sport athlete.

I understand that the school is short on money and we are in a recession, but asking families to pay hundreds of dollars for their children to compete in high school athletics is simply outrageous. What about families that have multiple students at RB? Over the course of four years, a single family could potentially end up paying around a thousand dollars. Yes, one thousand dollars.

The biggest problem with the “Pay to Play” system, in my opinion, is that the athletes of RB dedicate themselves to their sports, and they are forced to pay an athletic fee. I don’t think it’s fair that the athletes must pay out of pocket to participate. We are the ones who show up every day for practice. We are the ones who run those sprints. We are the ones who get out of bed on a Saturday morning to come to practice. Our entire lives are revolved around our sport, and to make us pay to compete is unnecessary.

On the very official “Pay to Participate Athletic Fee Program Form,” RB gets their point across that this money must be paid by the correct date or consequences will follow. Students who don’t pay are not eligible to play in any games or matches until the fee has been paid in full. That’s not even the best part. Any student who fails to turn in the $75 will be barred from participating in any dance, Prom, and the Senior Picnic.

Is this some kind of joke?

Our school board would take away the most important events in a senior’s year because of an athletic fee?

I understand that the school desperately needs money, but there must be some other way for them to get the desired cash. There are probably dozens of alternatives to making the athletes pay to play.

Why doesn’t the administration simply require the athletes to fundraise more?

After all, everyone loves a chocolate bar.

About the Writer
Cameron Kritikos, Sports Editor

Cameron Kritikos is a senior, and returning member of the Clarion staff. He is looking forward to another great year as a member of this wonderful newspaper....


5 Responses to “Want to play? Got 75 bucks?”

  1. Louis Robling on September 20th, 2011 12:54 am

    First off I agree that it sucks to have to pay to play. I was lucky and made it all four years without paying a fee just to participate, however, I do believe that under the current state of the school it is a necessary fee. The school is running out of money, and needs a way to support it’s self. By charging students to play in a sport it at least balances the cost of having those programs that, with the exception of the basketball and football team, lose money. The badminton team doesn’t exactly draw the largest crowd.

    The fact that they are imposing a penalty if you don’t pay is also legit. You’re going to tell me that you’re okay with kids skipping the payment (that you are paying) and still participating in school sponsored activities?

    Lastly how about a proposal for something different. I understand that this is an opinion article, but if you are going to have such strong beliefs on one particular side, you might as well propose what you would think is a better way to handle this issue.

    Other than that the article was informative. Looking forward to reading more sports article throughout the year. About time Clarion is up.

  2. Nick on October 1st, 2011 7:42 pm

    I thoroughly enjoyed this article, Its well spoken and you can tell the writer writes like he speaks. Coming from a first year clarion student its incredibly well done. Look forward to seeing more from you in the coming months keep it up.

  3. Bradley Wilson on October 13th, 2011 1:33 pm

    Sports cost money. That is a plain and simple fact.

    While it isn’t ideal to throw the cost on the backs of the high school students and their families, at this stage it is what has to be done. And correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t believe this was completely unexpected. It was considered last year, and my guess is most people following the news last year probably read this article or a similar one. So while the price of the fee is higher, it shouldn’t come as a complete surprise.

    You have to pay to participate in recreational sports outside of school, and even at College in many cases you have to pay something in order to participate on any level of sports team, so why shouldn’t you have to pay for high school sports?

    If the money is there to cover all students, then by all means make sports free. But since it isn’t there, I think having a simple cover charge per sport is the most effective way to ensure sports continue.

    And I think your solution of having kids fundraise more is a potential option if a student and their family doesn’t have the money to pay, but it isn’t an efficient way to ensure that the money required to run a certain sport is collected.

    Overall, I did enjoy the article though. Glad to see someone taking an opinionated position. Keep up the good work.

  4. Justine on October 14th, 2011 1:25 pm

    Athletes should not have to pay an athletic fee to play.
    There are quite a few three sport athletes that end up paying way too much money. Students that play three sports a year have to pay up to $225 a year. The article written by Cameron Kritikos on September 19, 2011 said that “Students who choose to participate in multiple sports will now have to pay over $100 to play, possibly even $225 for the rare three-sport athlete.” Having to pay this much money isn’t always affordable for everybody but that shouldn’t keep students from playing a sport they love.
    No athletes should have to pay to play their sport and especially those that are involved in multiple sports.
    I agree with the statement that athletes shouldn’t have to pay an athletic fee in order to play a sport that is a big part of their life.
    Although I agreed with this article I don’t think that the author used enough evidence to support his claim. He told a lot about why it’s bad and the repercussions of failing to pay the fee, but not enough on how to fix it. Fundraising is something that is done a lot but is not always welcomed by others.

  5. Daniel Somers on November 2nd, 2011 5:23 pm

    How is this surprising/outrageous? The referendum didn’t pass, and there are consequences for that. The school can’t print it’s own money, so the school now needs to disperse it’s economic burden somehow. The pay to play system is the alternative to cutting certain sports altogether, which would be unfair to that sports participants. Nobody likes it, but thats just the way it is.

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Want to play? Got 75 bucks?