Waverly Schools Drop Pay-to-Participate Fee

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Making that game changing tackle wasn't always an option for students in the Waverly Community School District. With pay-to-participate fees on athletics the option typically came down to which sport to play that year.

"If they couldn't afford it some of them wouldn't try new things," said Vince Perkins, Director of Human Resources at Waverly Community Schools. "Now if they were just going to play basketball maybe they'll try football."

With tight budgets participation fees to play sports is common in many school districts. However in an effort to increase participation and remove barriers to play sports, the Waverly Board of Education voted on Monday to remove that cost.

"It was an impediment to student learning and we decided to re-visit that policy," said Calvin Jones, a Trustee on the Waverly Board of Education.

In the past, cutting sports programs was one way the school district dealt with budget concerns. Now school administrators are optimistic that this policy change will help school enrollment, in turn strengthening the school's budget.

"It's going to help in the long-run with our school system as well as our high school," Perkins added.

Under pay-to-participate high school students had to pay a $50 fee for each sport they played. By eliminating this cost school officials hope it will boost enrollment in athletics.

"Certainly at the high school level it's one last opportunity to let kids be kids without putting undue burdens and fees on top of the things they seek to accomplish," Jones noted.

With no more fees for students to play sports, hopefully more will be going out for the team.

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