Attention Student/Athletes, Are You Eligible?


Amanda Mourelatos, Editor-in-Chief

Recently, the policy for eligibility has been revised. The new district policy is that student/athletes who were failing at the 4 ½ week point can be reinstated 2 ½  weeks after progress or quarter grades. A student/athlete cannot lose their eligibility at the 2 ½ week point if they were eligible at quarter or progress.

With the old policy, there were checkpoints every 4 ½ weeks, compared to the 2 ½ weeks now. Because of the big gap between checkpoints, lots of student/athletes would quit or give up because they lost hope to regain eligibility. Unlike the old rules, if you are eligible by the first main grade check, you cannot lose eligibility until the next main grade check. Steve Botkin, Sahuaro’s Athletic Director, believes that the main reasons students become ineligible are not being in their afternoon classes because of early release for games, lack of attendance in class, tardiness, lack of communication with teachers and lack of focus. Botkin describes failing classes as “a big snowball rolling downhill.”

Student/athletes can earn back eligibility by taking advantage of tutoring on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Steve Botkin talked to all coaches, and student/athletes are allowed and even encouraged to miss practice in order to go to tutoring. Since students often miss their last periods due to games, they easily fall behind; tutoring can help them get back on their feet. Botkin said tutoring is “a tremendous opportunity for students if they fall behind. It gives them a light at the end of the tunnel.”

“We love the new eligibility policy. Especially since girls volleyball is a fall sport, it’s always tough when there aren’t many grades entered in for classes at the time of first grade checks,” said Coach Alexis Ann Roether, the assistant girls’ volleyball coach, “I’ve had it happen before where a girl forgot to turn in her syllabus on time and was failing the class at first grade checks because hardly anything was entered and she was ineligible for FOUR WEEKS last season. This year, I had two ineligible and one is now eligible again.”

The girls’ golf coach, Megan Hughes, said, “I am happy about it. I had one player who would have missed almost all of our matches if the policy had been the same as last year.  Now, she got her grades up and can compete in our last 5 matches. So, it worked out well for us!” Coach James Lawwill, the boys’ golf coach, said, “I think it is a great incentive for those athletes who have grade problems. Having to sit out 5 weeks usually leads to the student faltering with academics even more.  Many times being in an activity keeps students out of trouble and motivated.”

Below are the grade check dates:

When students can gain or lose eligibility:

Sept. 5th, 2019
Oct. 9th, 2019
Nov. 20th, 2019
Dec. 26th, 2019
Feb. 12th, 2020
Mar. 18th, 2020
Apr. 29th, 2020

Grade check for ineligible students:

Sept. 23rd, 2019
Oct. 28th, 2019
Dec. 9th, 2019
Jan 20th, 2020
Mar. 2nd, 2020
Apr. 6th, 2020
May 18th, 2020

Ineligible students can be reinstated only:

Sept. 24th, 2019
Oct. 29th, 2019
Dec. 10th, 2019
Jan. 21st, 2020
Mar. 3rd, 2020
Apr. 7th, 2020