All-Star Missing Practice!!!

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Dec 21, 2010
This is something that truly frustrates me!

As a coach it gets ridiculous. I can't handle STUPID excuses. Especially when the parent calls and the excuse is not valid. It sucks that their parents think it's okay for them to miss practice for these reasons. Here are some of the excuses I have received.

"She is worn out from finals" GUESS WHAT?! Almost every girl on a small senior 5 team have finals at school as well. They are all "worn out"

"Her sister is in town from college" This was recently over winter break. GUESS WHAT?! almost everybody's family is in town for the break/holidays. INCLUDING the coaches themselves. What are you going to do for two hours with your sister you spent most your life with, that you cant make it to one of the last practices before you compete for a bid.

There are plenty more that I dont feel like listing. Don't get me wrong. I understand when a crisis happens or you HAVE to be gone, but the excuses are annoying.

I feel so strongly about this because I myself, LOVE practice. I NEVER like missing practice EVER. I don't understand... if you don't like going to practice... why even make a commitment to a team?!

You guys should post some ridiculous excuses that you have heard. They can get pretty Comedic.
I caught a parent flat out lying to me once. "Girl A" was supposedly working on a huge project for school, when in fact, she was at school practicing for a play.
I found this out because one of my other girls missed play practice for cheer practice and was pissed that "girl a" got to go to play practice.
UGH hate it!
One year we had a girl who missed 2 weeks of practices for her grandfathers funeral.
She used the same excuse next year to get another 2 weeks off.

I know for a fact both of her grandparents died before she was born.

Whats worse is that her mom called her in!
All of the girls on my skool team are all dancers so they like can't miss 10 minutes of their dance practice they go to for like 3 hours 6 days a week so they skip half of a basketball game. And they have to go to a dance comp so they miss a huge assembely. It makes me mad becuz it lets down the girls who are committed to it and causes issues with stunt groups too.
a girl on my team last year missed practice to go to her friends practice.....
one of my kids (lets call her Suzie) texted me saying she was sick, which is excused. And then her friend walked in for practice and told me that "Suzie" invited her to go to the Mall of America to go on the rides and that she said no because we had practice. I played it cool at the next practice when I saw "Suzie", hoping she would fess up. But shes still got the wrist band for the rides on her wrist, so I couldn't help but say something.

Our rule is: family death, contagious illness, or school event for a grade (not EC) is excused. Everything else is not. More than 3 excused and your off the floor. Thats it at the HS team I coach at, its a little different at my AS gym though I think.
It's Unacceptable to miss practice. In the summer I understand it's okay. But lame excuses like "too much homework, a party, a cold" no. Uh uh. You made the commitment so show up to practice. It's all about determination and what's best for the team. If you contagious, okay I understand stay home. If you have a cough or your not contagious, just show up anyway and watch. Support the team! Same goes for injuries. Just be there to support wether you can participate or not.
I also feel that people who always miss practices do nothing for in the team but hold them back and don't deserve to be on the team.

I could rage about all day long because it's the one thing that drives me INSANE, but I won't.
How do you handle a situation where a Suzie has to miss practice or even a competition for a legitimate reason, i.e. a death? Is that excused, acceptable, etc.?

For instance, I had to miss a competition for my grandfather's funeral. Of course it was unplanned and it forced my whole team to change the routine around. But, once I resumed practice after the weekend, I never got my spot back. Just wondering if this is normal. I was point dancer and ended up getting moved near the back after the incident. I always felt like I was being punished for an incident that was out of my control. But maybe not I guess, an absence is an absence?
Kids missing practice is one of the most irritating things I have to deal with... we don't have an attendance policy for the lower levels so there's nothing to really enforce, but I feel bad for the other kids on the team who dedicate themselves and actually show up to practice when they don't do as well at competition because Susie decided to go shopping and therefore didn't know the end of the dance. I wish parents would put more effort in too - it's all too often that a kid who can't drive will be 20 minutes late because mom had to finish putting on her makeup and I'll have to spend time re-teaching something to get them caught up.

For higher levels we allow 2 excused absences (the cheerleader, not the parent has to ask to be excused) before they're removed from stunts and 3 before they're removed from the team; it works pretty well, we've never had to remove anyone.

To IloveSeniorElite - I've moved kids to near the back if they're absent at a competition even if they're excused, but not as a punishment; it's just what's best for the team. It's a lot less noticeable if there's a missing spot in the back and everybody else got moved forward than to not have a point dancer. Then maybe the person who got moved to the front showed me they could perform and I decided to keep them. Nothing against the person who was absent for something they couldn't control, but why change things again?
I prefer to be told the truth. Period. I hate when ANYONE misses practice, but at least be honest with me and don't call in "sick" when you're not.
Missing a practice or comp for a death in the family should be excused. I don't know why your coach didn't give you your spot back. Of I was your coach I would have.
These excuses would never fly at my daughters gym and I appreciate it. If I bring my daughter to practice no matter what, I would expect the same from all the other parents. I am well aware that if even 1 kid is missing it impacts the team tremendously.