Deadline looms for hockey parents to complete mandatory course
Parents of young minor hockey players are required to take an online course which focuses on respect in the sport.
Published Tuesday, December 11, 2012 6:43PM AST
Hundreds of young minor hockey players could be benched indefinitely this weekend, if their parents don’t complete a mandatory online course.
Hockey Nova Scotia says four to eight-year-olds aren’t allowed to play after tomorrow unless their parent or guardian has completed the course, which focuses on respect in the game.
“It’s about how to behave better in the stands and how to behave better with the children themselves, not to put too much pressure on the child to succeed or step beyond their level,” says hockey parent Gord MacDonald.
James McKee also completed the one-hour, $12 course.
“I think it is just to get out the message to parents about how they treat their children, the coaches and the referees,” says McKee.
However, the families of at least 100 players in the Cape Breton Minor Hockey Association are refusing to comply with the program.
Some simply don’t like being forced to take lessons on hockey parenting and those with the Cape Breton Minor Hockey Association says they have no plans to enforce the no-course, no-play rule.
“Our business is to put children on the ice and not to take them off,” says Pam Reid with the Cape Breton Minor Hockey Association. “Even if they don’t have the course, we are not taking them off the ice.”
However, the executive director of Hockey Nova Scotia says that won’t fly with him
“If any minor hockey associations wilfully allow kids who should not be participating in Hockey Nova Scotia sanctioned events after December 12, the president of that minor hockey association will be removed from their position,” says Darren Cossar.
Hockey Nova Scotia is also threatening to ban renegade teams from participating in provincial play downs.
Despite the warnings, the 33-league group admits only 13 of its associations have fully complied with the new rule.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Randy MacDonald