Falls athletic handbook has new GPA provision

Addition provides academic 'safety net' for student-athletes

June 26, 2012

Menomonee Falls - The Menomonee Falls School Board has decided to implement an academic intervention strategy in the district's athletic handbook.

Students who have more than one F are ineligible to compete in a sport, which is mandated by the Wisconsin Athletic Association. The Menomonee Falls School District decided to add another layer to this, which says if a student's cumulative grade-point average falls below a 1.7, the school district would begin to implement the Response to Intervention strategy for that student.

The amendment to the athletic handbook adding the 1.7 cumulative grade-point average will not make a student ineligible, but it will spur the intervention method. The amendment to the handbook was unanimously approved by the School Board on Monday after a board workshop fleshed out the details of the GPA requirements.

"It's a little more stringent, but it's also a way to give our athletes a little more support because national studies show students involved in extra curricular programs perform better and graduate at a higher rate and we want to keep them engaged," School Board member Faith Vanderhorst said.

The type of intervention would be implemented on an individual, student-athlete basis, depending on the student's needs. However, if a student has more than one F, they will be ineligible per WIAA rules.

"It wouldn't be a situation where a student who falls below a 1.7 loses their eligibility, it would trigger intervention strategies in place for that student and as long as they participate in those interventions, they wouldn't lose their eligibility," School Board member Lori Blodorn said. "It depends on the individual student and what their needs are."

School Board Member David Noshay said the Response to Intervention strategy is one that is used for all students across the district, not just athletes. However, the board felt it was important to implement it into the athletic handbook.

"What we're doing is ensuring there's a safety net in there and it ensures we're giving all students as much academic support as we can," Noshay said.

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