Story Category: Byrd's Eye View On Youth Sports »
St. Mary's Park and Rec Sets Community Standards
St. Mary's County, MD - 4/25/2011
By Toni Byrd
Most people know that St. Mary’s County Recreation & Parks offers a wide variety of sports and activities throughout the county. What you may not know is that the Department spends a good portion of their resources overseeing volunteer leagues and ensuring the quality and safety of the activities. They’ve initiated community standards that are much needed in today’s times.
Volunteer Youth Sport Leagues with the Department of Recreation & Parks, through a written and signed league agreement are administered by volunteer boards, which involve more than 11,000 youth participating on over 800 teams. Funding for these leagues is provided through registration fees, fundraisers, and sponsorships. The leagues are responsible for all financial operations and administer their funds through league bank accounts. The Department assists the leagues by providing safe playing fields, game and practice scheduling and coaches training and certification.
Why was Community Standards in Youth Sports initiated?
• Recreation & Parks recognizes that youth sports are an integral part of the lives of many of the county’s families where a safe, fun and enriching experience is the primary goal. To insure a high standard for child safety and positive youth development within youth sports leagues that participate in county parks and facilities, the Board of County Commissioners approved the Raising Community Standards in Youth Sports initiative on March 7, 2006.
What is included in the Standards?
• BACKGROUND CHECKS:
St. Mary’s County funds the cost for up to 2 coaches per team for all youth sports leagues.
A list of approved coaches can be found at www.stmarysmd.com/docs/CertifiedCoaches.pdf
• COACHING CERTIFICATION
St. Mary’s County requires at least 2 coaches from every youth sports team to be trained and certified through the National Youth Sports Coaches Association (NYSCA) or a comparable certification.
• PARENTS CODE OF ETHICS
All parents are required to sign a Parents Code of Ethics statement prior to their child participating in any youth league.
• NO SMOKING
Smoking is limited to beyond 150 feet of any playing field/surface.
You can go to http://www.co.saint-marys.md.us/recreate/index.asp to get more info on their community standards and upcoming activities.
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