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Addressing Favoritism Between Coaches And Parents

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This resource stems from a question submitted to the Ask PCA blog. Responses come from our experts including PCA Trainers, who lead live group workshops for coaches, parents, administrators, and student-athletes.

"My daughter is a Junior in high school, and she participates in a team sport. For our tournaments, we travel and must stay in hotels or Air B&B type houses. In the past, our coaches have shared a house with other parents on the team, some of which are on our parent board.My question is this commingling with families of players ethical, overall, for a professional coach?"

PCA Response by Former PCA President Tina Syer

Thanks so much for reaching out to PCA with this question. Without knowing all of the details of this particular situation, the first idea that comes to mind is that coaches (and potentially administrators) need to be aware of how particular arrangements may be perceived, even if the coach does not believe (or own the fact that) they are leading to favoritism.

Have you already asked for a private conversation with the head coach to talk about this matter? I'd advise you to bring this topic up directly with the head coach before elevating it to the athletic director or other administrative leadership. Anything you can do to make this conversation with the coach as non-confrontational as possible would be wonderful. Maybe this is "asking permission" for the conversation: "Would you be willing to take some time to talk with me about our travel accommodations?" Of course, you do this in private - perhaps over the phone.

Download a printable version of this resource, including any additional commentary from PCA, by clicking the PDF below. To read more questions and answers like this, or to submit your own question to the Ask PCA blog, click here.

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