School Sports Programs On The Chopping Block

Looking for a solution to a budget deficit, Edgecombe County Schools is considering cuts in the athletics department.

The proposed budget shows an eight-percent reduction and calls for the elimination of several athletic teams, including wrestling and golf at Tarboro High School, cross country and indoor track at Southwest Edgecombe and North Edgecombe High Schools.

The proposed budget would also cut cross country in all middle schools and cheerleaders will no longer travel to games outside the county.

The school board will meet again later this month as it works to finalize the budget.


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  • by Obama Snake Oil co Location: Washington on May 13, 2011 at 03:57 PM
    Well, enjoy that hope and change...we have to fund all those new jobs for inspectors, EPA and air quality people Obama made us take....with strings attached. Now you know why we too out most democrats in the last election in the state. Now we need to do it in the federal while we still can. But our coast, our water, our environment is so much better now....what were some of the fools thinking about. And those new jobs....government mandated. But we don't need teachers either so we will cut them too...hope and change...who were the fools that voted for this?
  • by Something to think about on May 13, 2011 at 11:19 AM
    I have lived in Tarboro my how life and went to Edgecombe County schools. I know this is kinda off course a little but sports is all we have here. There is nothing for young kids to do here. Please lets not take the last thing that kids and teens have to look forward to doing. They wonder here why there are so many drop outs and kids getting in trouble and its because you are taking everything away from them so they find other things to do with there time..
  • by laura Location: greenville on May 13, 2011 at 07:37 AM
    I'm sure I'll catch it for this comment, if it's approved, but I agree with the decisions to cut some of those athletic programs. Liability insurance, coach/asst coach pay, insurance for the vehicles/drivers/staff that travel to games, it costs more than people think. While the UDHR gives us the right to an education, extracurricular athletics isn't part of it. If the parents want to totally take over the program, meet off of school grounds, arrange transportation, coaches, and pay the expense, then let them. If it's that important to them, they'll do it. Take the money saved, and put teachers aides back in the classroom...something that goes to benefit all students, not just a select few.
    • reply
      by Local on May 13, 2011 at 10:44 AM in reply to laura
      Laura, the vehicles are already there, used for field trips, band concerts etc. The coaches are already teachers and would do it for no extra cost if needed, most asst. coaches are also teachers or volunteers. There are ways around liabilty insurance cost such as hold harmless agreements and such (insurance already on vehicles I hope), coaches are salary=no overtime and they generally drive the bus. All I am saying is why jump the gun and cut the CERTAIN sports without first looking for a solution, kinda like shoot first ask questions later mentallity.
    • reply
      by Teacher on May 16, 2011 at 05:16 AM in reply to laura
      You are correct in saying that students have a right to an education but it is a right to "A sound BASIC education". Following your premise, we need to look at any activity/class outside of the basic education guidelines. As such the following should be eliminated due to costs: JROTC, Band, Chorus, Vocational Elective courses, Foreign Language Courses, AP Calculus, AP Biology, AP Chemistry, AP History and others. These are all courses/electives outside of the definition of "a Sound BASIC Education" and are costing money that could be better utilized elsewhere. The high school experience is one that is rich in diversity and choice. It allows the student to find their niche in life and begin to prepare. If we make choices to cut, who makes that decision? Are we to follow their perceptions of what is necessary? If we cut, then cut according to what is basic and what is not. At that point you need to apply the adage, "Be careful of what you ask for because you just might get it."
  • by Anonymous Location: Hertford on May 12, 2011 at 09:06 PM
    People in Raleigh have lost touch with NC, unless you are in the 40 mile radius of Raleigh. Lets give companies like Firestone and Goodyear six million for staying in NC, who goes to work there in 5 to 10 years with no education. I know I am not talking about sports, lets plant more flowers on the side of our highways so companies will come here for the looks of the state, and not for the education that we provide. A daisy a day will keep the legislator away. Way to go boys in Raleigh, 1 cent for you thoughts, thats what it is about. Cut jobs pay unemployment we are really saving money now. I say close Raleigh and don't pay them and see how many stay there. But its our fault we put them there. To many of them have lost touch, lets see what they think when our kids don't have an education, who will they blame, us. We should have fought harded. How many of them got a good education in the public school system, how about give our kids a fighting chance. Enough said. We are now living on political promises made by a few to big companies and getting more money every day. So why not cut education, they are still going to make money off the tax payer. Budget writers who taught you, i guess it was Mr. Green Jeans, and not a public school or college teacher, bless your little heart. It always seems like it NC it's always someone elses fought. So who will they blame for this one, Democrats or kids. My guess its the kids. Sorry boys and girls we had to cut education so we could plant more flowers on our highways. One day you can grow up and plant them for us, because you won't have much of a education.
  • by US-First Location: Greenville on May 12, 2011 at 07:41 PM
    A bunch of BULL. There is no money saved cutting track or cross country. In terms of equipment cross country is totally paid for by the parents. The only cost is travel which could easily be overcome if the public school system would treat school sports like club travel sports. That is get your own ride. If you can't get a ride then yes you have trouble but why cut the whole thing for those few. I know how many so called down trodden family's travel all over for football and baseball. Don't tell me their son can't hitch a ride with them. Also I am positive parents would start car pools. Also all seniors can drive themselves to their sports. Most of them to in their club sports. School policies are the problem causing the added expenses and they should just be changed! If nothing else keep the sport on school grounds continue to practice and scrimmage. Accept more players on teams and form two teems to play against each other. Switch it up a couple times a season. No need to do away with the sport.
    • reply
      by Local on May 13, 2011 at 10:37 AM in reply to US-First
      Amen!!! There are ways to make it work, we just have to be more envolved.
  • by Rick Location: Williamston on May 12, 2011 at 07:02 PM
    I do not believe that basketball, football, or baseball raise enough revenue to pay their expenses. Please someone show me how and include the cost of equipment, travel, uniforms, security, lights,maintance on the facility,and an amortization on the cost of the facility.
    • reply
      by Local on May 13, 2011 at 10:34 AM in reply to Rick
      Rick, the athletic boosters for those sports off set the cost not provided for by the school. That is the reason sports such as wrestling and track are on the cut list, they do not have booster support. Tarboro has a long history in football and baseball, if they tried to cut them the town would explode. The football program is back to back state champions and draws crowds from well outside the county, therefore more revenue for the school and the town. Tarboro puts on and Easter baseball tournament where teams from as far away as New Jersey come to play, again a revenue for the school and the town. My concern is why pick and choose one sport over another. My child wants to play football, baseball and wrestling, he is a great student and participates in school functions other than sports, but is very upset that he will not have the chance to even try wrestling. Some students only play one sport and it may be on the chopping block, and that is not fair to them, they also need to be well rounded students.
  • by Anonymous on May 12, 2011 at 06:24 PM
    If they cut athletics, local crime will increase. Young people need an outlet. Not to mention all of the other benefits of sports (see the comment by Anonymous @08:02 PM).
  • by Anonymous on May 12, 2011 at 05:02 PM
    Whats up with people saying sports are useless? In the grand scheme of things are sports any less important than say music, art, home economics, horticulture, or even history. Sports build confidence, teamwork, leadership skills, discipline,social skills, and it leads to healthy living. Sports and activity provide students with the opportunity to obtain scholarships to go to college.
  • by anon rapper Location: snow hill on May 12, 2011 at 04:26 PM
    All extracurricular sports ahould be cut until the school system is able to afford the additional expense. The mail goal of the educational system is and should be education; playing on an athletic team is a form of education but not what is the main goal of the public school system. Cut athletics, not teachers !!
  • by Local Educator on May 12, 2011 at 01:59 PM
    The economic problems in ECPS began 2 superintendents ago when the School Board was talked into supporting a bond proposal that was not sustainable due to increasing construction costs (a fact known at the time of the vote). The next superintendent sold the Board on a laptop initiative. Where are those superintendents now??? GONE with their resumes padded from their "projects" in ECPS. Now we have another outsider making decisions that we impact us long after he is gone. This issue goes well beyond sports. It is a long-term leadership issue with the district.
    • reply
      by Former ECPS Employee on May 13, 2011 at 11:57 AM in reply to Local Educator
      You are exactly right but try telling that to Mrs. Wilson, Mrs. Davidson and a few other BOE members. Stone and Witherspoon could do no wrong at all! Every word out of their mouths was a golden tidbit to be taken as knowledge from on high! They rode this system for all they could get and then left.
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