Saint Kilian Parish School Athletic Association, Cranberry Township, PA

My my My my
The association collects a registration fee for each sport played. What is this money being used for and what does this cover?
The registration fee we have collected is applied to offsetting the costs of uniforms for our children and basic essentials for the teams. Our goal is to work to keep fees low while providing a high quality sports program for our school and children.
What are the activity fees used for? 
The activity fees help to offset the cost of referees at soccer, basketball, volleyball, entrance fees for our tournaments (Cross Country, soccer and basketball if we can find a tournament for this age level), field rentals, and gym rentals to name a few areas. The fee typically gives us assistance in working to offset some of these costs.
Will the fees be reduced in the future?
At the present time the fees are either going to remain the same or increase slightly to cover the costs associated with the programs. Fees for events continually increase and as our children move up in levels, typically the fees increase for the events.
Why does the association request early registration for sports?
We ask this for a few reasons. The first is to get a handle on the number of children seeking participation in the sport so we can work with coaches and develop a plan to develop a program for our children. Another reason is to make sure we have uniforms for the children to wear for the season. With this move we will turn in a signed roster to the diocese stating the children associated with that particular team. If a child is not on the roster prior to turning in the forms, he/she will not be able to play on the diocesan team for that season. It will be critical to receive the registration forms and releases when we request them towards the end of the school year for next participation in next school year’s sports programs.
If I pay online am I automatically registered?
No. You must still submit the two medical releases. 
What is SKPS's strategy for constructing "competitive" teams? 
Our goal is to maintain competitive teams in every sport.  However, the 3rd and 4th grade teams are considered developmental in nature and we will work to develop skills and engage the athlete in working on the skills and development portion.  For 3rd grade, we are a developmental team throughout the season.  For 4th grade, we are developmental in nature and will introduce more competitive sports during tournament play.  This helps assist in preparing the athlete for JV sports and later Varsity sports.  Our JV teams (5th and 6th grade and our Varsity teams (7th and 8th grade) will field the competitive teams along with the other diocese schools.  The diocese team will be competitive and if numbers for registrations are high, typically an evaluation will take place to form the diocese team and a less competitive team.  No matter the situation, our goal is to do what is in the best interest of the athletes.  While this will not make things 100% unanimous, please understand that it is impossible to make everyone 100% happy and we are working to do what is best for the student athletes.
How can SKPS teams compete against teams that practice/play 2+/x week?
Practices are worked in to assist all teams based on gym availability.  Our goal would be to get everyone to practice 2-3 times per week but gym space is limited, volunteer coach time is limited and we have heard from families that 2-3 times per week is too much for younger athletes.  For the foreseeable future we will be limited until our new church is constructed (even then with the growth of our program teams will be practicing off sight for many teams).  We are searching for early agreements for 2011/2012 seasons and beyond to acquire gym space and are looking at the pricing to keep our fees low.  Some other schools are at $100 plus per season to assist in offsetting the rental of gym space.  Our goal is to maintain the most competitive pricing while still allowing our athletes the ability to develop.
Do the older teams get priority (SKPS gym time) over the younger teams?
In many schools that is the case and during the past few years we have not done that with our program.  For instance, during basketball season the 3rd grade boys’ team practiced throughout the season more than the JV teams due practice schedules; some coaches asked for a single practice per week; others would have liked 3 practices per week but we have to be make things work for all our teams and for teams within the parish and other groups.  As we grow, the older teams will most likely begin having more access to gym space for practices.  For the diocese game schedules and league schedules, the older teams will tend to take priority in this area due to a set amount of time permitted to finish all game play in the Diocese of Pittsburgh due to playoffs and championships.
Do the "A" teams get priority (SKPS gym time) over all other teams? 
No they do not.  We have treated both the section teams and league teams very similar in nature.
Does each team receive a certain amount of $$ for gym rentals? 
We do not provide a team with money for gym rentals.
As Saint Kilian sports continue to grow, if too many athletes join a particular program, will teams be divided to represent smaller teams?
The goal is to have smaller teams to assist in generating play time for all athletes in the program.  Each sport contains a different set of specifics – soccer can have multiple teams and since our fields can accommodate larger groups, having multiple teams is not as much an issue provided registrations are received prior to SKPSAA submitting to the diocese our team count;  volleyball will typically be broken up into 2 JV teams; 2 Varsity teams based on registrations and numbers;  basketball in the developmental brackets will be split evenly to work on development,  JV and Varsity teams will be split based on evaluations and a team will be entered into Diocesan Section Basketball (more competitive) and Diocesan League Basketball  (typically teams will be split into 2 teams based on numbers with the section team rostering 10-11 athletes and the league team rostering 10-15 athletes.  In certain situations it will be reviewed about adding additional teams.
Do coaches go through any type of training/course... just because someone knows how to play a sport doesn't mean they can "coach" the sport.
Our volunteer coaches are just that, volunteer coaches.  They have knowledge of the sport, the skills to assist in developing our athletes and creating a positive environment for the children.  The Diocese offers basic coaching rules and guides but we do not have a official document on how to train a coach to coach. 
Are coaches mentored on how to schedule games through the year / working with other teams / conducting practices, etc.? 
All our teams have different guidelines.  For example, our 3rd and 4th grade team games are pooled from a diocese meeting and games are selected by the coach if other teams are available during the meeting.  We generally try to give a day and time for games but that does not always work out due to other schools availability.  Our JV and soon to be varsity teams are scheduled by the diocese coordinators for the section games and the coordinator for the league games both independently.  We provide them our game time slots and they pull the other teams information and begin preparing schedules.  Game time slots are tough since all section and league games have to begin at 6:00 PM or later and only a few games per night can be played.  Our gym was open on select weekends when other events at the parish were small in nature and this provided us a great means to have 4 additional games on the weekend on Saturday alone, and 3 more time slots on Friday evening.
How can a parent share their feedback about their child's coach? 
Fill out our Coach Evaluation Form.  Additionally, parents can talk directly to the coaches, the principal, or to the athletic director.
Does this year's coach automatically become next year's coach? 
Not necessarily but in many cases if feedback is positive and the coach is willing to return, we will proceed with having them return.  Some coaches enjoy coaching the developmental teams and do not seek to continue moving up in older grades with more competitive coaching.  In addition, if other qualified individuals step up and wish to volunteer for the position, we will consider their qualifications for the coaching position. 
Can I coach sports if I do not have my clearances?
No.  All clearances must be completed prior to coaching or volunteering at any diocesan school.  No exceptions.
How many times per week should a team (maybe it varies by grade) be practicing each week?
There is not set rule as to how much practice a team of any age gets in a school.  Generally we will try to have the older athletes practice 2 times per week (5th to 8th grades) and the developmental teams 1-2 times per week.  Other factors are involved including gym availability, coach availability and game schedules.
What can we expect as far as practice times... if not at SKPS, can a team find space elsewhere? 
We have used PRYC, Glade Run Church and St. Alphonsus for additional gym times in the past year to accommodate teams for practice schedules. Some teams took advantage of these additional time slots and others did not due to games and other commitments. SKPSAA is reviewing additional sites for practice and are looking to continue to control costs in this area.  Gym space is at a premium and most teams have an alliance with a school prior to Saint Kilian Parish School opening a few years ago.  We can find gym rentals in a few cases but the costs become prohibitive in nature so we continue to explore additional areas to acquire additional gym time.
Strategies for scheduling games... if a team cannot get gym time for practice, then use games as your practice time.
Originally we were going to do this with the teams however based upon schedules and gym availability, we were not able to do this for the season.
What do you do if your coach doesn't want to practice more than 1x per week?
This can be discussed with the coaches on an individual basis as needed. 
What options are available for teams/children outside of our basketball season? 
There are options open for basketball players.  AAU basketball is a very popular option for the athletes as they will continue to learn and develop their skills with another team and set of coaches.  Many organizations offer programs in our area if you are interested.  In addition, many camps are offered during the summer months at local universities to assist in continual development of the athlete.  Some offer day camps, others will offer a weekly camp for the athlete.  All camps are not created so speak to others about the camp you are interested in attending.  There is a summer league that forms with all other catholic schools for the months of June/July and sometimes August.  Your coach will advise you more when the school receives information.  The summer league is a chance for kids to play organized basketball with a flexible schedule. 
Will SKPS have open gym time where teams can come and practice during the off season?
We are speaking about open gym sessions during the school session to keep the athletes interested in basketball and will work with the coaches and the grades associated with basketball based on next season’s teams. For example, the 6th grade boys and girls will be varsity players next season and will work out with their own age group; current 4th and 5th grade players will merge for summer and next season so they will work out in an open gym environment for JV;  current 3rd graders will work out with other current 3rd graders.  The gym is closed down during the summer months as maintenance and other duties are performed at the school and in the gym.  This year our hardwood floor will be sanded and resurfaced to keep it in excellent condition in time for volleyball and school gym sessions.
Will our teams continue to be competitive? 
Competitiveness amongst other schools is a goal, the key word is competitiveness not winning necessarily.  Athletes can do their very best and that is the goal all coaches seek to have is to push the athletes hard to do their personal best and to develop into a team player. 
Why was it hard to find 3rd grade games?
Our school chose early on to have a developmental team starting at the 3rd grade level.  Many schools do not offer a sports program at this level thus it gets difficult to find schools with 3rd grade only teams.  Our developmental teams played in a nice mix of games over the past 3 years and we are pleased how it has all worked out.
Can my athlete play on multiple teams?
The answer is, it ‘depends’.  SKPSAA follows rules set forth by the diocese and based on those rules it will be determined if an athlete can play on multiple teams (ie a JV Section Soccer player could be named on the roster of the JV Section team and the Varsity section team (but not a league team); similar rules apply to volleyball, basketball and football.
What happens if my athlete loses their uniform? 
Per our registration, the family will be responsible to reimburse the school a fee of $75.00 to replace a lost uniform.