PARISHVILLE - The Parishville-Hopkinton Central School District Board of Education has not given its blessing to a proposal to merge its girls and boys basketball programs with neighboring rival Colton-Pierrepont Central School.
Board member Fred Wilhelms motion to accept the proposal, failed to garner a second, effectively killing the merger for at least this year.
Were talking about one sport for one year, he said.
Despite the lack of a long-term commitment, other concerns such as scheduling and the impact it would have on the districts other activities left no one willing to second Mr. Wilhelms motion.
If we go through with this merger, I think it will kill the other activities, board member B. Resa Remington said, adding that the districts drama production and mock trial team both rely on contributions from athletes and specifically basketball players.
Pure speculation, but a lot of the athletes are the people who do mock trial and the play, board President Ward Remington said. The athletes are the go-getters.
Ms. Remington noted that both of the boys projected to play varsity basketball this year were involved in the play last year.
According to projections, based on student participation last year, Parishville-Hopkinton was looking at a boys varsity basketball team with two players, one junior and one senior, while Colton-Pierrepont was looking at a squad with six - three seniors, two juniors and a sophomore.
Superintendent Darin P. Saiff said the lack of a merger will force the district to abolish its junior varsity program with seventh, eighth and ninth graders playing modified and 10th, 11th and 12th graders playing varsity. Based on the projections presented Monday night, that would mean a team of five players, the number of players on the floor at any given time for a team.
Board of education member Daniel Taylor, who was sworn-in prior to the meeting to fill the vacancy created by the death of Steven Wilson, said he wanted to know what the students thought of the agreement.
Have we talked to the kids? he asked. I would be interested in seeing our kids thoughts.
Mr. Zellwegger said he spoke with one of the boys who told him that he would have been willing to play in a merged team last year, something that would have made the team more competitive.
Mr. Taylor recalled being in high school at Parishville-Hopkinton and playing basketball one winter and also participating in mock trial and the play.
We have a difficult enough time getting students involved in the musical play or anything else, Mr. Remington said. This would only make it more difficult.
According to the proposal, girls from Parishville-Hopkinton who were playing basketball would have been bused to Colton for practices after school with boys from Colton-Pierrepont being bused to Parishville.
After reviewing the projections for this upcoming season, board of education member Timothy Zellwegger noted it appeared like both schools had enough girls to field their own team, numbers that werent available when the proposal was being discussed in the past.
They said their numbers were low, and we said our numbers were low, Mr. Zellwegger said. Do we want to approve the boys merger and send it back to them because we both have the numbers for girls.
Based on the projections, Parishville-Hopkinton was looking at a varsity team with five girls, while Colton-Pierrepont was looking at a team with seven. Both schools had healthy numbers for their junior varsity girls teams, meaning additional players could be available if need be.
While that was on option, Mr. Saiff said hes not sure how that would have been received by members of the Colton-Pierrepont board.
When we spoke about it, we spoke about merging all levels in both genders, he said. I dont know if its presumptuous of us to propose this to them.
When the proposal was being crafted, Mr. Saiff said the agreement called for their girls to go to Colton-Pierrepont and for their boys to come to Parishville-Hopkinton.
Im not sure how the parents would receive that without having a reciprocal, he said.
Prior to a vote on the motion, which was seconded by Mr. Wilhelm, Mr. Zellwegger withdrew his motion, ending the possibility for any kind of merger this year.
I will speak with Mr. Kardash tomorrow morning (today) and offer to be at their meeting tonight to explain our boards position, Mr. Saiff said.
The basketball merger is on the agenda at tonights Colton-Pierrepont school board meeting.