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Athletic Policy (Part 2)


Athletic Participation – Violations – Alcohol / Drug Policy


Violations of the drug policy will be enforced during the student athlete’s athletic career.  An athletic career will be considered from the first practice on an interscholastic athletic team to the end of their high school eligibility as stated by the NYSPHAA.


If a student is found in violation of the chemical abuse policy the following procedures will be used to discipline and help the student athlete.


1st Violation (Option A) – The athlete will be suspended for a minimum of ten weeks.  The suspension will carry over to the next spots season the athlete plans to participate in, if the violation occurred at or near the end of the sport season they are currently competing in.  During those ten weeks or duration of the suspension the student athlete may not attend any practices or contests and will not be allowed to try out for an upcoming athletic season.  The student athlete will need to seek the appropriate counseling and meet the counseling criteria before the student athlete will be allowed to try out for another athletic team that represents the Dunkirk City School District (see below counseling criteria).


1st Violation (Option B) – The athlete may ONE TIME ONLY in his/her athletic career, choose to receive appropriate counseling, AT THE COST OF THE STUDENT, for the problem related to the offense.  If the student athlete meets the following criteria the student athlete will be suspended for five weeks (35 calendar days) from the signing of the Option B agreement.  The student athlete will be expected to attend all practices unless a counseling session creates a conflict (if a counseling session creates a conflict with practice the student must attend the counseling session).  The student athlete will also be required to attend all home games; attendance to away games will be at the discretion of the coach.  If the student fails to meet the following counseling criteria for Option B, they will be automatically disciplined according to the provisions of Option A.


            Counseling Criteria:


1.  The student athlete must make an appointment within seven calendar days of signing the Option B agreement.  The counseling program must be approved by the athletic director.  Proof of an appointment is the responsibility of the student athlete and must be given to the Athletic Director within that duration of time.


2.  The student must attend a minimum of three sessions with the counselor.  Proof of attendance must be given within the five weeks of suspension to the Athletic Director.  If proof is not given within five weeks the student athlete will be disciplined by the guidelines of Option A.


3.  It is within the counselor’s rights to require the student athlete to attend more sessions than the minimum three sessions that is required by the Athletic Department.


4.  Information on counseling programs will be provided by the Athletic Department.


2nd Violation – The student athlete will be suspended from all athletic participation of one calendar year (365 days).  The student athlete will have to complete the counseling criteria above within the duration of the suspension to be eligible to participate in interscholastic athletics after the duration of the suspension is over.


3rd Violation – The student athlete will no longer represent the Dunkirk City School District in interscholastic athletics for the remaining part of their high school eligibility.


Athletic Participation – Reporting of Violations / Procedures


Upon receiving information that a student violation has been committed, the student athlete will be suspended indefinitely pending an investigation and decision by the Athletic Director.  If it is deemed that a violation has been committed, enforcement of the violation will begin immediately.


Athletic Participation – Self Referral for Alcohol / Substance Abuse


If a student athlete feels that they have a problem with alcohol or substance abuse, it is highly encouraged to report themselves to their coach, guidance counselor, Athletic Director, teacher, or principal.  This should be done in good faith with the sole purpose to increase the health and well-being of the student athlete.  The student athlete will not suffer any violation of the athletic code and will be guided to the appropriate counseling program.  If it is deemed that the student athlete reports their problem with the sole purpose to precede any information that may cause a violation of the athletic code (i.e. being arrested or caught at a party) the student athlete will be held to the violation of the athletic code.




In the Dunkirk City School District, harassment, hazing or bullying (behavior designed to intimidate another individual) in any form during school or outside the school day is unacceptable and prohibited.  It shall be considered a violation of the student athlete “Code of Conduct” as well as dangerous, compromising an athlete’s well-being and counter-productive to a team’s positive growth.


Hazing shall be defined as any intentional action; situation created; group conduct or method of intimidation to/by a group (or individual) that is designed to deny (or results in denying) a person his/her rights within the school society or a member of the team.


This shall also include any action that seriously impacts or compromises an athlete’s physical or psychological safety (demeaning by nature), by inflicting mental anguish, physical discomfort/pain, severe embarrassment, harassment, hurtful pranks, psychological pressure, intimidation, ridicules or endangering another person whether in public or private.


This definition shall also include any action or coercion that typically pressures an individual to agree to be involved in a humiliating action/task(s) that suggests the athlete will be more fully accepted into a group/team irrespective of team status or playing time.


It is understood that hazing of any kind is not allowed in our school or in athletics.  It is further understood that student athletes have a duty to report any acts of hazing he/she sees or knows of to a coach or administrator, and participation in or failure to report any hazing will result in a disciplinary review and possible suspension and dismissal from the athletic program.  It should be considered that all athletic events are an extenuation of the school day.


The Dunkirk City School District Interscholastic Athletic Program teaches respect for all athletes at all times and is overseen by the New York State Dignity for All Students Act which encompasses student discrimination, harassment and bullying prevention and intervention.


Stealing or Vandalism


Stealing or vandalism is a violation of the law, Dunkirk City School District Policy and the Dunkirk City School Athletic Policy.  Inappropriate actions will be referred to the Athletic Director and Building Principal for disciplinary consequences that include suspension of athletic privileges, complete restitution of goods stolen or vandalized, a meeting with the student athlete’s respective school counselor and parents and other consequences.  If stealing or vandalism occurs at a school or place where the student is representing the Dunkirk City School District as part of an interscholastic team, the parent and student will visit the school or place and make full restitution.  All of the above must be completed before the student athlete is reinstated.


Social Media


Student-athletes will be held accountable for their actions displayed through electronic communication.




School Suspensions


In-School Suspension – If a student athlete receives a day or more of administrative assigned in-school suspension, he/she will not be able to participate in any interscholastic competition on the days of assigned in-school suspension.  He/she may still practice during the in-school suspension period as physical conditioning requirements of competition must be maintained.


Out of School Suspension – If a student athlete receives a day or more of administrative assigned out of school suspension, he/she will not be able to participate in any interscholastic competition or participate in practice until the suspension is successfully completed. 


Habitual ISS and/or OSS sessions by a student athlete will result in reduced playing time and/or removal from the respective sport team.


Appeal Procedure / Process


This procedure shall apply to all sections of the Dunkirk Interscholastic Athletic Handbook.  Any appeal regarding an enforcement of the policy must be made by the close of the following school day.  All suspensions and dismissals will be enforced as previously indicated unless changed by the action of the appeal committee.


A.         Step #1 – A student athlete may request a hearing by a committee made up of a coach (other than the coach of the sport involved), the Director of Athletics and the High School Principal.  Parents of the suspended student athlete shall be invited to attend this hearing.  The involved coach will submit a written statement concerning the matter.


B.         Step #2 – In cases where the committee’s decision in Step #1 is not acceptable to the athlete, the decision may be appealed to the Superintendent of Schools.  Implementation of this step must be presented to the Superintendent of Schools in writing within three (3) days of the decision at Step #1.  The Superintendent shall review the case on its merit and his decision shall be final.


Releasing a Student / Athlete from an Athletic Squad


Sometimes it’s a tough decision as to whether it is beneficial to keep a student athlete on the roster who is beginning to become a disruption to team chemistry.  In these situations, the coach and Athletic Director will set up a private meeting for the student/athlete and the parents to discuss all the athlete’s options.  At this time, the coach should be prepared to fully discuss the athlete’s behaviors and projected role on the team in the future.


The philosophy on the Junior Varsity and Modified levels is to retain as many athletes as possible for developmental reasons in a building program.


At the Varsity level it may be necessary to make cuts due to the need for workable numbers as well as requiring higher skill and ability levels needed to compete at the Varsity level.


Emergency Cards (Blue Cards)


Emergency Cards (blue cards) are to be submitted to the school nurse to be on file prior to the first day of practice.  These cards are available in the high school and middle school health offices during the school year and the high school and middle school main offices during the summer.


To try out or start practice for a sport that holds tryouts, a student must have a valid, up to date physical on file with the school nurse and an emergency card (blue card) turned into the school nurse by the deadline set by the Athletic Director for each season.  If there is no up to date blue card or physical on file prior to the start of tryouts, the student cannot try out.


The same rule is in effect for sports without a tryout unless an extenuating circumstance exists why the blue card was turned in late at the discretion of the Athletic Department or the numbers for a sport are so low that more athletes are needed.


Sports Physicals / Injuries / Illness / Insurance


Each student athlete must have an up-dated health history form (blue card) and pass a physical exam approved by the School District physician prior to participation in practice sessions or participation in any interscholastic sport.


Sports physicals are scheduled at various times during the school year.  The student is responsible for reporting for the physical examination at the scheduled time.  All paperwork is required to be filled out prior to the exam, if not the school physician will not perform a physical exam.


Students having their personal doctor perform the physical examination should submit a school physician examination form completed and signed by their family physician.  These forms are available in the health office and must be approved by the school physician after personal physician’s approval and prior to participation.


Physical exams, whether completed by your family physician or school physician, may be scheduled at any time during the school year.  The results of the examination shall be valid for qualifying a student’s participation for a period of twelve months.  The examination is valid through the last day of the month in which the examination was conducted rather than 365 days from the last examination.  If the twelve month period for the physical examination expires at the start or during a sport season, participants may conclude the season, as long as a health history update was completed prior the sport season.


The athlete is to report all injuries, no matter how minor, to the coach.  Coaches are required to report all injuries within 24 hours of the incident and complete an incident report to be filed with the Athletic Director and school nurse.


Athletes must communicate immediately with coaches regarding injuries and health issues.


Student athletes who are injured during a sport season will be asked to be recertified, if the injury causes them to miss one or more day(s) of practice or competition due to the injury.


If a student athlete is absent from attendance in school or at practice sessions due to illness for five or more consecutive days, he/she must have the approval of the school physician and a medical release from the attending physician, before participating in a practice, scrimmage or a game.  This release must be filed with the school nurse and approved by the school physician.


If a student athlete goes to an emergency room for care, he/she must obtain a written release statement from the attending physician before leaving the hospital.


Medical expenses resulting from any athletic injury must first be submitted to the parents/guardians insurance carrier.  Any remaining unpaid balance may then be submitted to the District’s insurance carrier for processing.  Claim forms can be obtained from the school insurance office.  The District’s insurance provides only supplemental coverage according to a schedule of benefits.


Concussion Management Policy / Protocol


The Dunkirk City School District will assemble a concussion management team (CMT) for Interscholastic Athletics and for each respective building for non-interscholastic athletic situations (predominately for Physical Education classes).  This is in response to the Concussion Management and Awareness Law which went into effect on July 1, 2012 and coincides with the release of NYSED – Guidelines for Concussion Management in the School Setting.


Additional information can be found at the NYSPHSAA website:


  • The Interscholastic Athletic CMT will consist of the Athletic Director, either MS or HS nurse, respective sport coach(s) and the BOE appointed school physician.


  • The Building Level CMT will consist of the respective Building Administrator(s), Director of Physical Education, respective school nurse, respective building physical education teachers and the BOE appointed school physician.


The District’s CMT should coordinate training for all administrators, teachers, coaches and parents.  Training should be mandatory for all coaches, assistant coaches and unpaid assistant coaches that work with these student athletes regularly.  In addition, information related to concussions should also be included at parent meetings or in information provided to parents at the beginning of sports seasons.  Parents need to be aware of the School District’s policy and how these injuries will ultimately be managed by school officials.


Training should include:  signs and symptoms of concussions, post-concussion and second impact syndromes, return to play and school protocols, and available area resources for concussion management and treatment.


The respective CMT will act as a liaison for any student returning to school and/or play following a concussion.  The CMT will review and/or design an appropriate plan for the student while the student is recovering.


The School District’s CMT can utilize the NYSPHSAA website as well as for information related to the signs and symptoms of concussions and the appropriate return to play protocols.  A handout describing the Concussion Management teams is also available on the NYSPHSAA website.  A Concussion Management Check List that has been approved and recommended by NYSPHSAA is available on this site.


Concussion Management Protocol


Return to play/participate following a concussion involves a stepwise progression once the individual is symptom free.  There are many risks to a premature return to play including: a greater risk for a second concussion because of a lower concussion threshold, second impact syndrome (abnormal brain blood flow that can result in death), exacerbation of any current symptoms, and possibly increased risk for additional injury due to alteration in balance.  These NYSPHAA current return to play recommendations are based on the most recent international expert opinion.


Please reference NYSPHSAA website –



Transportation Provided by District Policy


Members of interscholastic teams are expected to be part of the team, traveling to and from scheduled events with the team and under supervision of the coach – only team members may ride the bus.  Coaches will supervise and assume responsibility for these students while traveling with the team.


Coaches have the right to sign student athletes out prior to dismissal to meet competition start times.


If District transportation is provided, team members WILL NOT drive individual vehicles and have parents/guardians or others transport them without prior written approval from the Athletic Director.  Permission will be granted only for extenuating circumstances.


After the event, athletes may ride home with their parents/guardians by following these procedures:


1.  Written request from parent/guardian is submitted to the Athletic Director at least 24 hours prior to the scheduled game/meet/match.

2.  The Athletic Director will verify and approve request by affixing his/her signature and date on request and then return it to the student athlete.

3.  Athlete will present his/her coach the verified request in order to be released to his/her parent guardian.

4.  The coach must personally meet the parents/guardians before the student athlete can be released.

5.  The individual named in the signed permission notice must be the same individual signing the parental consent form to transport a student athlete in private vehicle.


Varsity Letters


Upon earning their first Varsity letter, the student athlete will receive their Varsity “D” and sport specific pin.  For each additional Varsity letter earned the student athlete will receive the appropriate sport specific pin.  By earning a Varsity letter, this also qualifies the student athlete to apply for membership in the Varsity “D” Club (which is an extracurricular club that all Varsity athletes are eligible to join which promotes the many attributes of being a Varsity athlete at Dunkirk Senior High School).  Athletes participating in subsequent years will earn the appropriate sport pin for each Varsity letter they earn.


The awarding of a Varsity letter is determined upon the recommendation of the specific sport coach.  The Director of Athletics reserves the right to disallow an athlete from earning a Varsity letter if athletic handbook policies are violated.


Equipment / Uniforms


At the beginning of each season the coach will provide athletes with school issued uniforms and equipment.  The student athlete will be responsible for maintaining proper care of equipment.  It is the responsibility of the student athlete to return to the coach all clothing and equipment issued to them during the season.  Failure to do so will result in the student athlete paying for the missing articles.


Student athletes not paying for the missing or damaged articles will forfeit their right to participate in the next sport season or be eligible for any certificate or letter.  If this student is a senior, they will be unable to participate in ANY end of the year graduation activities (including Graduation) and their diploma will be held until the situation is rectified.


To be in compliance with all of the rules and regulations, any piece of uniform or equipment that is purchased by the student athlete must be approved by both the Athletic Director and coach prior to it being used.

Any athlete leaving a team during the season must turn in his/her uniform at that time.  Non-compliance with repeated requests (by coaches) to return uniform parts will be treated as insubordination with the appropriate consequences.  Any student not returning District supplied uniform/equipment will not be allowed to try out for the next sports’ season.


The cost to replace single uniforms (which must be purchased new, even if the lost one is used) may be as much as double the cost of uniforms when the District purchases them in a bulk order.


Fees paid for lost/stolen uniforms are used to replace the missing uniform.  Checks should be made out to the Dunkirk City School District and submitted to the Dunkirk City School District Business Office.


Any student athlete wishing to purchase their uniform (as a keepsake) will be given the name, telephone number, etc. of the vendor to purchase it from.  It is then the student athlete’s responsibility to complete this transaction.  The District cannot participate in such a purchase.


Parent / Guardian Spectator Code of Behavior / Ethics


It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian/spectator to:


1.  Keep cheering positive.  No profanity or degrading language/gestures.

2.  Avoid actions which offend visiting teams or individual players.

3.  Show appreciation of good play by both teams.

4.  Learn the rules of the game in order to be a better informed spectator.

5.  Treat all visiting teams and spectators as guests and show respect.

6.  Accept the judgment of contest officials and coaches.

7.  Encourage all spectators to participate in the spirit of good sportsmanship.

8.  Avoid the use of drugs, including alcohol and tobacco.


Student Athlete Code of Behavior / Ethics


It is the responsibility of the student athlete to:


1.  Demonstrate self-control and respect for others at all times.

2.  Remember that participation in athletics is a privilege that is not to be abused by unsportsmanlike conduct.

3.  Deal with opponents with respect.  Shake hands after the competition and congratulate them on their performance.

4.  Respect the integrity and judgement of the officials.

5.  Remember that improper behavior while in uniform, in school or in the community reflects poorly upon yourself, your family, your school and your community.

6.  Understand and abide by the rules and regulations of the game.

7.  Accept victory with grace/modesty and accept defeat with dignity/class.

8.  Remember that the use of drugs, including alcohol, tobacco and performance enhancing supplements is detrimental to the game and its participants.


Coaches Code of Behavior / Ethics


It is the responsibility of the coach to:


1.  Promote good sportsmanship by setting a positive example while coaching.

2.  Respect the integrity and judgement of the officials.

3.  Approach competition as a healthy and constructive exercise, not as a life or death struggle that requires victory at any price.

4.  Recognize that the participants in individual or team sports are young men and women with human frailties and limitations and who are capable of making mistakes.

5.  Refrain from the use of crude abusive language with players, opponents, officials or spectators.

6.  Instruct the players in the elements of good sportsmanship and remove players from competition who demonstrate unsportsmanlike behavior.

7.  Avoid behavior that will incite players, opponents or spectators.

8.  Avoid and eliminate negative comments to radio, TV and newspaper reporters.

9.  Remember that the use of drugs, including alcohol, tobacco and performance enhancing supplements is detrimental to the game and its participants.


Any Dunkirk student athlete and/or coach who is ejected/disqualified from a contest will be automatically suspended for a minimum of one game (depending on circumstance(s)).  The game(s) is to be the next regularly scheduled contest(s) and may be carried over to the next season.  Ejection/disqualification incident report must be submitted to the Athletic Director, the Section VI office and the League Sportsmanship Chairperson.  If necessary, a conference between the player, coach, parent or spectator and the Athletic Director will take place before the individual(s) is eligible to return.


Any parent/guardian or spectator who is asked to leave by game supervision, administration and/or law enforcement personnel from a contest will be automatically suspended for a minimum of one game (depending on circumstance(s)).  The game(s) is to be the next regularly scheduled contest(s) and may be carried over to the next season.  Ejection/disqualification incident report must be submitted to the Athletic Director, the Section VI office and the League Sportsmanship Chairperson.  If necessary, a conference between the player, coach, parent or spectator and the Athletic Director will take place before the individual(s) is eligible to return.


The student athlete by signing the Interscholastic Athletic Policy Handbook Agreement agrees to these conditions and realizes that failure to comply with team rules and guidelines may result in limited participation or suspension from the team.


College Athletics


The primary focus of the Dunkirk City School District Interscholastic Athletic program is to teach life-long values, skills and lessons not to produce scholarship athletes.  A small minority of athletes go on to play at the collegiate level and even a smaller amount of athletes receive athletic scholarships.  It is important for parents and athletes to communicate with the coach if there is potential for the athlete to play at the next level.  The Athletic Director and coaches will be able to give the athlete an honest evaluation of the appropriate level of play that may be suitable for the athlete.  The Athletic Director, Guidance Counselor and/or coach can also guide the parents and athlete through the recruiting process (NCAA Clearinghouse, college visitations, etc.)  However, it is the responsibility of the student/athlete and parents/guardians to register for the NCAA Clearinghouse.


National Collegiate Athletic Association Information


Freshmen-Eligibility Standard (revised for 2005)


All student athletes wishing to tryout/play at the College Level (Division I or Division II) must register with the NCAA Initial-Eligibility Clearinghouse.


The Dunkirk Senior High School Guidance Department has the forms and the most up to date information on qualification as well as participation regulations.  All NCAA rules, regulations and forms can be obtained on line at


Available are copies of:

A Guide for the College Bound Student Athlete and Their Parents

Handbook for the College Bound Athlete

NCCA Guide for the Two Year College Student Athlete

NCAA Guide for the College Bound Student Athlete

Making Sure You Are Eligible to Participate in College Sports


It is the student athlete’s responsibility to know the requirements and meet the standards for participation.  Any questions should be directed to their guidance counselor.  Non-standard testing conditions can be requested through your guidance counselor.  Not all Dunkirk Senior High School courses are approved for use in determining NCAA initial eligibility.  Each year prior to choosing courses for the high school program, students should check with their guidance counselor.  It is the student and parents responsibility to register with the NCAA Initial Eligibility Clearinghouse.


NCAA Clearinghouse


Please refer to the Interscholastic Athletic Policy Handbook Agreement Statements.


NYSPHSAA Eligibility Rules (Summary)


  • A student athlete is eligible to participate:

  • If they are a high school student in regular attendance in grade 9, 10, 11 or 12 and taking (3) three subjects plus physical education.

  • If their parents and doctor approve.

  • If they have not played more than four consecutive sports seasons after first entering grade 9.

  • A student in grades 9-12, who transfers, with a corresponding change in residence of his/her parents, shall become eligible after starting regular attendance in the second school.

  • A student who participates in any unapproved all-star contest shall be ineligible to compete in interschool athletics in all sports for a period of one year from the date of such participation.

  • If they have not played or practiced with a college team.

  • If they are an amateur and have never used their athletic skill for gain (received a payment of any form) and if they have never competed under an assumed name.

  • If they are familiar with the rules of the game and the standards of sportsmanship.

  • If the student athlete has the appropriate amount of practices prior to a scrimmage/game.

  • Student athletes must compete in a minimum amount of contests to be eligible for post season play.

  • Student athletes that represent Dunkirk Senior High School can only compete in NYSPHSAA sanctioned interscholastic contests and they are allowed to participate in a maximum amount of contests.

  • A student in grades 7th, 8th and 9th is eligible for modified competition.

  • One is eligible for modified when the sixteenth birthday is attained; however, if a student attains the sixteenth birthday during a sport season he/she may complete that season.





Sports Currently Offered

Dunkirk City School District




Fall Boys:                                           Winter Boys:                                     Spring Boys:


Varsity Football                                   Varsity Basketball                               Varsity Baseball

JV Football                                          JV Basketball                                      JV Baseball

Varsity Soccer                                                Modified Basketball                            Modified Baseball

Modified Soccer                                 Varsity Wrestling                                 Varsity Track

Varsity Cross Country                        Modified Wrestling                              Modified Track

                                                            Varsity Indoor Track                           Varsity Tennis

                                                            Varsity Swimming                               Varsity Golf


Fall Girls:                                           Winter Girls:                                      Spring Girls:


Varsity Soccer                                                Varsity Basketball                               Varsity Softball

Modified Soccer                                 JV Basketball                                      JV Softball

Varsity Volleyball                                Modified Basketball                            Modified Softball

JV Volleyball                                       Varsity Cheering                                 Varsity Track

Modified Volleyball                              JV Cheering                                        Modified Track

Varsity Cross Country                        Varsity Indoor Track

Varsity Tennis

Varsity Swimming

Varsity Cheering

JV Cheering



For updated schedules and game/meet locations please visit: