The Lawton Athletic Code


Following is a complete copy of the Athletic Code, which all Lawton student-athletes are responsible for reviewing.

In order to participate in practices or competitions, the student-athlete must be in school for AT LEAST Achievement hour and the last two (2) periods of the day.

PREAMBLE

Representing lawton Community Schools in interscholastic athletic competition is a privilege and not a right. Students who participate in Lawton's interscholastic athletic program are expected to represent the highest ideals of character by exemplifying good conduct, good citizenship, and good sportsmanship. Lawton athletes are also expected to engage in good training habits, which include abstaining from the use of tobacco, alcohol, or drugs. Separate and apart from a student's performance as an athlete, the student's conduct, citizenship, sportsmanship, and training habits reflect at all times on the student athlete, his or her team, our school, and our community. Accordingly, the Board of Education establishes this Athletic Code for all students who aspire to participate in interscholastic athletics as representatives of the Lawton Community Schools.

Athletic Code

** All athletes are required to have a current physical on file with the athletic department before competing in any athletic event or practice.

I. Eligibility Rules

    1. All student athletes must have a full time schedule of classes.

    2. Weekly Eligibility: The student must be passing all of the courses in which he / she is currently enrolled. Students will be granted a one week probationary status when a grade falls into the failing level.

    3. Trimester Ineligibility: Any student failing one class period will be ineligible for 10% of the total contest dates of the sport they are currently participating in; 5% if they fail achievement.If they are not currently participating in a sport, they will be ineligible for 10% of the total contest dates of the next sport season. Students failing more than one class period at the end of any trimester period including achievement shall be ineligible for 60 school days or the next trimester. When a student fails one or more classes in the third trimester the penalty of 10% for 1 failed class or 60 days for 2 failed classes will be assessed for the next school year's fall season / first trimester. If a student makes up a credit in summer school or credit recovery before the start of the next season, their ineligibility may be reduced.

II. Standards of Conduct For All Athletes

    1. Training rules are in effect for all athletes year around. Once a student participates in athletics, he / she shall be subject to the Athletic Code for the duration of his / her academic / athletic career at Lawton High School.

    2. Standards of Conduct:
      The following behaviors constitute a violation of the Lawton Athletic Code and subject the athlete to discipline as outlined in the "Penalties for Violations of Rules" section of the Athletic Code.

      1. Violation of federal, state, or local law / ordinance, including felony or misdemeanor, acts other than minor traffic offenses. Conviction of said act is not necessary to establish a violation of the athletic code, which will be determined through an independent school investigation.
      2. Cumulative or gross misconduct, including behavior which school officials consider conduct unbecoming of an athlete and a representative of Lawton Community Schools.
      3. A Major Violation of the Student Code of Conduct
      4. Violation of any team conduct rule as may be established by the team's head coach and approved by the Athletic Director.
      5. Use, possession, concealment, distribution, sale or being under the influence of (substance abuse prohibitions).
      6. Remaining at a function or place where the athlete knows that a minor present at the function or place possesses or is using a controlled substance or alcohol.

      Students suspended In-school or out of school cannot participate in athletic contest and / or practices scheduled on the day of the suspension.

III. Training Rules 9th - 12th Grades

  1. Training rules are in effect for all athletes are year round. Once a student participates in athletics, he / she shall be subject to the Athletic Cod for the duration of his / her academic / athletic career at Lawton High School.

  2. All reports of training rule violations must be investigated by the Athletic Director and the Principal, with appropriate follow-up action taken. Parents of athletes who are not 18 years of age and who have violated training rules shall be notified in writing by the Athletic Director. This notification shall include the basis of the accusation, the penalty involved and shall be delivered as soon as possible after the investigation is concluded.
  1. Training Rules:
    The following behaviors constitute a violation of the Lawton Athletic Code and subject the athlete to discipline as outlined in the "Penalties for Violations of Rules" section of the Athletic Code.

    The basic training rules that apply to all athletes are:
    1. No athlete shall use, possess, transmit tobacco or tobacco products.
    2. No athlete shall use, possess, transmit or be under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or intoxicating liquor.
    3. No athlete shall use, possess, transmit or be under the influence of any drug or controlled substance, including but not limited to any narcotic drug, hallucinogenic drug, amphetamine, barbiturate, or marijuana. Nor shall any athlete use, possess or transmit drug paraphernalia or counterfeit or look - alike drugs or inhale or ingest any chemicals or products with the intention of bringing about a state of exhilaration or euphoria. The use of a drug authorized by a valid medical prescription from a registered physician shall not be considered a violation of this rule when the drug is taken by the person for whom the drug was prescribed. A look - alike drug is a substance that is not a controlled substance or is not a drug for which a prescription is required, which by dosage unit, appearance including color, shape, size and / or markings and / or by representations made, would lead a reasonable person to believe that the substance could be a controlled substance.
    4. A person shall be deemed to be in possession of an alcoholic beverage, intoxicating liquor, drug or controlled substance if the athlete is in a confined area such as, but not limited to, a motor vehicle or room where the alcoholic beverage, intoxicating liquor, drug or controlled substance is being used or consumed by others. This also includes situations where a student athlete is in a motor vehicle where an alcoholic beverage, intoxicating liquor, drug or controlled substance is being transported by another student with the knowledge of the athlete. This provision is not intended to apply when an alcoholic beverage, intoxicating liquor, drug or controlled substance is being used, transported or consumed by a responsible adult who has reached the legal drinking age, such as a student's parent or guardian, and where neither the students nor people who have not reached the legal age are not participating in the consumption or use.

IV. Penalties For Violations Of Rules

  1. For the first violation, the athlete shall be suspended from twenty (20) percent of the originally scheduled full team dates of competition. If the athlete chooses to complete the TND (Project Toward No Drug Abuse) program sponsored by the Van Buren County District Health Department or another approved program, the suspension will be reduced by half. The athlete MUST PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICES during the period of time the athlete is suspended from participating in contests. Failure to do so will result in the athlete being disciplined in accordance with the rules and guidelines set forth by the individual coach. When an athlete has violated a training rule he / she must finish a season for any served suspension to be counted. An example would be a person serving a suspension in baseball, and then immediately quitting. This person would have to serve a suspension in the next season of participation. To be reinstated the student - athlete must receive permission from the Athletic Director. Permission will be granted after the Athletic Director has verified that the terms of the suspension have been met and after he / she has conferred with the student - athlete and his / her parents or guardians.

  2. For the second violation, the athlete shall be suspended from forty (40) percent of the originally scheduled full team dates of competition. The athlete MUST PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICES during the period of time the athlete is suspended. Failure to do so will result in the athlete being disciplined in accordance with the rules and guidelines set forth by the individual coach. To be reinstated for athletic participation, the athlete must:

    1. Voluntarily, and at their own expense, begin a program of substance abuse counseling, if the first and second violations involved alcohol or controlled substances. The student - athlete is responsible for verification of participation in this program being delivered to the Athletic Director.
    2. Work as a volunteer at three (3) athletic contests or an approved equivalent.
    3. Attend a committee meeting with his / her parents, the Athletic Director, the Athletics and Student - Community Activities Committee of the Board, and the Superintendent, to discuss the violation of the Athletic Code, and to review the athlete's progress in fulfilling the requirements for resuming contest participation. The athlete will not be allowed to resume participation unless and until this committee determines that the athlete has satisfactorily fulfilled the above requirements.

  3. For the third violation, the athlete shall be suspended from contest participation for ninety (90) school days. The athlete MUST PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICES during the period of time the athlete is suspended. To be reinstated for athletic participation, the athlete must:

    1. Voluntarily, and at his / her own expense, begin a program of substance abuse counseling, it two of the three violations involved alcohol or controlled substances; or, voluntarily, and at their own expense, resume a program of substance abuse counseling, if all three violations involved alcohol or controlled substances.
    2. Work as a volunteer at ten (10) athletic contests, or an approved equivalent.
    3. Attend, with his / her parents, a meeting of the Board of Education, and the Athletic Director, to present a 500 - word paper on the perils of substance abuse, to discuss the violations of the Athletic Code, and to review the athlete's progress in fulfilling the requirements for resuming contest participation. The athlete will not be allowed to resume contest participation unless and until the Board of Education determines that the athlete has satisfactorily fulfilled the above requirements. During the suspension, the athlete may participate in practices only at the discretion of the coaches of the sport or sports involved.

  4. For the fourth and subsequent violations, the athlete shall be suspended from contest participation for double the number of school days for the most recent violation (180 school days, 360 school days, etc.). All other provisions of the third violation will be repeated. During such suspensions, the athlete may participate in practices only at the discretion of the coach or coaches of the sport or sports involved. NOTE: These suspensions carry over from one season to the next and from one year to the next, effective with the beginning of the ninth grade year through the end of the twelfth grade year.

  5. Due process and right of appeal shall be offered to athlete

Enforcing The Athletic Code: Due Process And Appeal

In the event that there is reason to believe that a student athlete has violated the Athletic code of Conduct, the following procedures shall be employed:

I. The Athletic Director And Principal

  • The Athletic Director (A.D.) and the Principal are responsible for ensuring that athletes adhere to the Athletic Code. Should the A.D. and Principal have reason to believe that a violation may have occurred; the A.D. and Principal shall investigate the circumstances.
  1. The Investigation: In the event it is alleged there was a violation of the Athletic Code, the A.D. and Principal shall conduct an investigation. This investigation may include discussion with the athlete in question.If the investigation results in the A.D. and Principal believing that there was a violation of the Athletic Code, the A.D. shall reduce the charges to writing. The charges shall (1) state the facts establishing the basis for the A.D. and Principal's belief that the Athletic Code was violated; (2) state the penalty proposed by the A.D. and Principal; and (3) advise the athlete that the athlete shall be given the opportunity for a hearing in the event the athlete disagrees with the charges. The charges shall be given to the athlete and, where appropriate, to the athlete's parents.

  2. The hearing: In the event the athlete does not agree with the written charges of the A.D. and Principal, the athlete shall be entitled to a hearing before the Athletic Council before the charges and the penalty proposed in the charges are imposed. The athlete must submit a written request for a hearing to the A.D. within three (3) school days after he / she receives the written charges from the A.D. The athlete's failure to follow this procedure will terminate the right to a hearing. The hearing shall be held as soon as it can be reasonably scheduled, but not later than five (5) school days after the athlete requests a hearing in writing. The purpose of the hearing is to determine if a violation was committed and, if so, to render discipline as stated in the Athletic Code. At the hearing, the A.D. shall state the charges, may call witnesses, or allow the student to answer the charges, call witnesses, produce other evidence, and be assisted by others. The Athletic Council shall decide on the guilt or innocence of the student, based upon the evidence presented, and renders discipline as required by the Athletic Code. Guilt shall be established if the preponderance of evidence indicates guilt. Evidentiary rules required by a court of law are not required for purposes of school or athletic discipline. The Athletic Council shall consist of three varsity coaches, but not the varsity coach of a sport in which the accused student athlete participates. The Athletic Director and Principal shall not be a member of the Athletic Council.

  3. Notification: At the conclusion of the hearing, the Athletic Council shall render a decision to the athlete, and to the parents of the athlete. The Athletic Council's written decision shall be considered timely if it is mailed within three (3) school days of the hearing. The A.D. shall not sit as part of the Athletic Council, but shall be responsible for writing and mailing the decision of the Athletic Council as herein specified.

  4. Appeal to the Board of Education: In the event the athlete disagrees with the decision of the Athletic Council the athlete shall have the right to appeal the Athletic Council's decision to the Board of Education. To do so, the athlete must submit a written appeal to the Superintendent stating the grounds for appeal and the remedy sought within five (5) calendar days of receiving written notice of the Athletic Council's decision. The athlete's failure to follow this procedure will terminate the right to appeal. Discipline rendered shall continue in effect during the appeal process, not to exceed that set by the Athletic Code. The Board of Education shall convene a hearing within ten (10) calendar days after receipt of the athlete's appeal. Board shall render a decision at the conclusion hearing. The decision of the Board is final.

  5. The Coach / Athlete Relationship: Nothing contained in this policy shall interfere with the coaches' responsibility and right to speak freely with their athletes, to correct them, to discipline them for less serious incidents, to encourage proper attitudes and behaviors, and to maintain their authority as coach.