Upton Athletic Code

The purpose of this code is to establish and maintain high standards of conduct for Upton Middle School athletes. The athletic department recognizes that pressures and problems can and do arise at home, at school, in social settings, and among team members. The athletic code is intended to guide and help the student and the parents understand the conduct expected of student athletes at Upton Middle School and also to understand the seriousness with which infractions of the code provision are viewed. It is hoped that this code will avoid the need for disciplinary action.

Upton Middle School will provide the best in coaching, equipment, and facilities to help the athletes perform their best. In turn, the athlete is expected to respect and be responsible to those seeking to help him or her learn the skills to be a winner.

Because athletes are representatives of our school, their conduct on school property, in public places, or elsewhere must comply with the highest standards of personal integrity and morality. The student athlete shall obey the rules listed in this code and shall not commit any criminal infractions of the community, state, or elsewhere. Any conduct not consistent with the conduct expected of our student athletes as specified in this athletic code may result in suspension of the privilege to participate.

Athletes are expected to exhibit a competitive spirit and show good sportsmanship in competition. The athlete has a responsibility to demonstrate loyalty to the school and to his or her teammates. If the athlete verbally or physically behaves in a manner that brings disgrace or disrespect to the school or his/her teammates, or that affects team morale, the athlete will face disciplinary action.

When questions come up concerning training rules, the athlete is responsible to discuss these matters with the coach.

Athletic Eligibility Criteria:

Participation in athletics at Upton Middle School is a privilege. A student-athlete is required to maintain academic standards while participating. The following is a guideline to ensure those standards are met.

Athletes must maintain a C- (1.667) average. Eligibility will be checked weekly with coaches and athletes notified on Friday that an athlete will be ineligible the following Monday through Saturday.
If a student-athlete is academically ineligible three times in a season, s/he is removed from the team for the duration of the season.
On the day of competition, the student-athlete must be in school three full class periods, and absences during 4th through 6th hours must only be for an approved reason (medical appointment, funeral, etc.).

Affected Sports:

  • Basketball
  • Cheer
  • Cross Country
  • Football
  • Pom Pons
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball
  • Wrestling

Athletic Physicals & Participation Fee:

Any student participating in interscholastic athletics is to have a physical examination completed after April 15 of the previous school year. A fee is charged for participation. This fee does not guarantee playing time.

General Athletic Rules:

The following rules are to be adhered to by all Upton athletes. These rules are in effect 12 months a year. Any infraction of these rules, or serious unethical conduct on the part of the athlete, may result in suspension or termination of athletic privileges for that particular athlete at Upton Middle School. These rules are cumulative and not independent in their application of either a second or third offense.

A. Substance Use, Abuse, or Misuse

  1. Students shall not smoke, chew, or possess tobacco products;
  2. Students shall not consume, possess, conceal, distribute, sell, purchase, or abuse any product or substance containing alcohol;
  3. Students shall not illegally use drugs or possess illegal drugs. This includes the misuse of legal drugs, or use of stimulants, steroids, counterfeit drugs, the possession, concealment, distribution, sale, or purchase of these substances.

B. Penalties for Violation of the Substance Rules

    Off-Season Infraction - Suspended from the scheduled athletic events for one-third (1/3) of the season. A more severe penalty may be invoked. The penalty may only be applied to a sport in which, during the past year, the athlete had participated. A 7th grade athlete may apply his or her suspension to the next sport in which he or she participates.
  2. In-Season Infraction - Once the athlete has begun a sport (defined as the first official practice), he or she will be suspended for the entire season. A suspended athlete may continue to practice with the team during this period of suspension if the coach wishes the athlete to do so.
  3. Second offense: Ineligibility for one (1) calendar year from the effective date of the decision. An 8th grade athlete will be ineligible through the end of the 8th grade school year. During this suspension the athlete may, with the coach's permission, practice until suspension has been lifted.
  4. Third offense: Termination of athletic privileges at Upton Middle School until the conclusion of the student's middle school career. If there are extenuating circumstances, the penalty may be less than termination.

C. Self Referral

A student who:

  1. Has voluntarily sought assistance for a substance abuse problem and has been admitted to a hospital-based substance abuse program; and
  2. Has voluntarily notified the school of his or her admission to such a program prior to being charged with a violation of the athletic code may be exempt from any penalty.

Any violation following the admission to a substance abuse program will result in an athletic penalty.

D. Transferring Student

A transferring student athlete carries violation consequences of the previous school's athletic code.

E. Rules of Conduct

An athlete may face immediate suspension from competition depending on the severity of the infraction.

  1. Students shall not commit any theft of goods, equipment, or property belonging to the school or to others.
  2. Students shall not commit any vandalism or illegal destruction of property.
  3. Students shall not engage in any serious unethical conduct.
  4. Students shall obey all laws of the community, state, or otherwise and shall not engage in illegal activities.

F. Penalties for Violating Rules of Conduct

The coach and athletic director will determine an appropriate penalty commensurate with the seriousness of the infraction, giving due consideration to the nature of the offense and the student's past record. The penalty may include reprimand, suspension from athletic participation, or termination of athletic privileges altogether.

G. Procedures for Violations of General Athletic Rules

Student athletes are expected to display honesty and integrity, and whenever a violation of these rules is suspected, they are expected to cooperate with coaches and administrators who investigate the charges. Whenever a violation of these rules is suspected, the athletic director, assistant principal, and the coach will conduct an investigation and will notify the student athlete of the nature of the charges and provide him or her an opportunity to discuss the matter. Where it is determined that an offense has occurred, the coach and the athletic director will assess the penalty. Parents will be notified within five (5) days after the penalty is imposed.

H. Appeal Process

Even though participating in athletics is a privilege and not a right, a process of appeal is available when an athlete feels that an unfair decision has been made concerning a violation of the athletic code. The athlete will follow these steps:

  1. Appeal the decision to the middle school principal within four (4) calendar days of receiving the penalty.
  2. A second appeal may be made to the superintendent of schools, within four (4) calendar days of the principal's response.
  3. A final appeal may be made to the St. Joseph Board of Education. Request must be made within four (4) calendar days of the superintendent's response. The Board's decision will be final.

Failure to appeal within the time limits will result in a waiver of any further appeal. The purpose of each step in the appeal process is to provide the responsible and affected parties with a full disclosure of the facts and a full opportunity to discuss the issues involved. All meetings will be informal and will be attended only by those immediately affected.

I. Rules for Participation

An athlete issued a detention is required to serve that detention prior to attending practice or game. In the event of a detention, it is the student/athlete's responsibility to notify his/her coach. It is also the student/athlete's responsibility to discuss an alternative detention with the staff member who issued the detention, should the detention occur on the date of an away game. This should be done prior to the day of the game.

If a student athlete is suspended from school, he or she will not be eligible to participate in athletics during the suspension period. An athlete is expected to set an example of responsibility. When school is in session the day following an evening athletic contest, the participating athlete is expected to be in school.

When school is in session, it is mandatory that an athlete is in attendance the day an athletic event or practice is scheduled in which the athlete will participate. “Skipping” class or being unexcused on a game day will disqualify the athlete from participation in that game or practice. Excessive skipping could result in the suspension of that athlete for an extended period of time. In order for an athlete to be eligible to practice or play in a game when ill from school, he must be in attendance at school during the 4th through 6th hours. (Doctor appointments, dentist appointments, funerals, etc., are not considered an illness).

II. Coaches' Rules

The Athletic Code of Conduct is a set of minimum standards of responsibilities for all athletes in Upton Middle School. Coaches may set additional rules and standards for athletes in their respective sports. These rules will be printed and given out to students.

Additional rules set by coaches must be cleared through the athletic director. Once set, these rules are binding and student athletes must follow these in addition to general athletic rules. In the event that a student athlete is disciplined by a coach for violations of coaching rules, the coach will notify parents by phone or mail within five (5) school days. The athlete or parent may appeal a coach's decision to the athletic director. The athletic director's decision will be final.

III. Travel Requirements

Students are expected to ride buses home when provided. A student may ride home with his or her parent only upon coach's receipt of signed note from parent.

Athletes are to bring their books, coats, and other belongings to practice with them. The gates may be down and your locker may be inaccessible when practice is over. The coach will issue a gym locker and a lock to the athlete if the student is not a physical education student during that particular sports season.

If you are to be picked up after practice, have your ride pick you up PROMPTLY in the back of the gym area. The athletic bus will pick you up in the same area.