Welcome to the BH-BL Athletics
At BH-BL, we believe that participation in sports provides a wealth of opportunities and experiences that assist students in their education. Accordingly, the district offers students opportunities to participate in nearly 30 sports across three seasons. The district is a member of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association, competing as a Class A school in Section II. League affiliation is with the Suburban Scholastic Council.
Suburban Scholastic Spectators Sportsmanship Code
We believe good sportsmanship on the part of spectators at high school athletic contests is as important as good sportsmanship on the part of athletes. As such, the following guide for conduct is suggested as a means of continuing and strengthening the ties that exist between competing schools.
Visiting team members, students and adult spectators are guests to be accorded all the courtesy and consideration that a friendly, well-mannered and well-intentioned host would normally give. The visitors, in turn, are to act as invited guests, using the home school’s facilities with care and respecting the rules and customs of the home school.
All spectators and participants are expected to follow this code: Athletic opponents and officials are guests and should be treated as such. Spectators should watch the game from those areas designated by each school as spectator areas. It shall be the responsibility of authorized school personnel attending games, either at home or away, to make sure students from their school conduct themselves appropriately.
Officials are the proper authorities to make decisions regarding rules and their interpretation; these decisions should be accepted. Cheering should be in support of either team and should not be directed toward creating unfriendly rivalries among athletes of fans. Any spectator who evidences poor sportsmanship will be requested to leave and may be denied admission to future contests.
Spectators, athletes and coaches must recognize that their conduct plays an important role in establishing the reputation of their schools and that their positive actions can relate directly to the success of their teams.
Sports Admission Guidelines
No unattended children at evening varsity sporting events
Students in grades 4 through 8 must be accompanied by an adult Athletic events are a very important aspect of school life and provide a wholesome way to influence the positive growth and development of our students. They can foster team building, health and fitness, and community spirit. Whether our children participate as athletes or spectators, they can gain immeasurable value from these contests.
Along with the privilege of participating in an athletic contest, either as a spectator or player, comes the responsibility to exhibit exemplary conduct, spirit and sportsmanship. Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake has been recognized in the past for its outstanding conduct and the example it portrays for others on and off the playing field.
Here is our concern. In the past few years we have seen more middle and elementary school pupils left unsupervised by their parents at high school athletic games and — as a consequence — more incidents of misconduct and other inappropriate behaviors by these pupils. This has particularly become a problem at night-time football games, where we can have as many as 1,000 people attending including an estimated 200 8th grade and younger pupils.
We seem to have more parents dropping their 4th to 8th grade children off at the high school and then picking them up after the game. This is not safe. It is particularly unsafe at night-time football games, where a number of kids disappear into the woods or congregate on the adjoining unlighted sports fields to socialize and unfortunately also to become involved in misconduct.
While we have numerous chaperones, the size of the campus and number of spectators diminish our ability to safely supervise unattended youngsters.
We are bringing this topic to your attention and we are changing our athletic attendance practice (see below) because it would be irresponsible for us as school leaders not to do so. No one wants to wait until a child is seriously injured at or abducted from one of our games to issue new safety rules.
- 8th grade and younger pupils will not be allowed to attend home evening varsity contests without an adult attending the game with them. An adult may be a parent, coach, grandparent or even a high school sibling. Children who arrive at the door or gate to a contest without an adult will be held there until an adult can arrive to either attend with them or take them back home.
- This policy will be in effect for all evening varsity football games and evening games for boys’ and girls’ soccer, and boys’ and girls’ basketball.
- High school pupils may enter a game without an adult but should be prepared to show identification if the staff member at the gate requests it.
- High school siblings with proper identification may escort younger siblings but not their sibling’s friends. Younger siblings must have some form of identification such as a school ID to attend a game with a high school brother or sister.
Many BH-BL residents moved here because this was such a safe and a healthy place to raise children. We believe this is still true, and that it can continue to be true as our community grows and changes, if we are willing to work together to actively model and teach children appropriate behavior and expectations.
Scholastic Council Policy: Guidelines for Signs, Banners and Flags
The visiting school community is a guest of the host school; therefore, visitors are asked to be respectful of host school property and policies. The placement of any school banner, booster club, parent or student sign, or flag from the visiting school is restricted to the designated visitors’ area only. School personnel from the visiting team would be responsible for the removal of inappropriately placed signs, banners, flags, etc.