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Organized Sports and Board members

Original post made by Joseph DeRossett, Val Vista, on Oct 22, 2007

I am looking for Pleasanton Parents and Families that have had or are now having problems with organized sports and board members in Pleasanton such as baseball or softball programs?

I would like to talk to you, please contact me at e-mail listed
below.

Hogdayz@sbcglobal.net

Thank you

Comments (38)

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Posted by Baseball Mom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 30, 2007 at 5:32 pm

I have had several problems with sports leagues in Pleasanton. I am not sure I want to give my name though; my son still plays baseball in Pleasanton. You may not get many responses to your request as I am sure that many parents feel the way I do and they really don't want to deal with the repercussions that may follow.

Good Luck!


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Posted by mom
a resident of Birdland
on Nov 16, 2007 at 8:33 pm

Why do you stop with baseball? Lets talk about boys soccer and the parents that work the system to benefit their sons....(portion of comment removed by Pleasanton Weekly staff) How will these boys be able to function in the real world without mommy or daddy pulling the strings....you are teaching your sons NOTHING about life. No wonder we have a bunch of kids at risk...blame the parents!


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Posted by Burt
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 24, 2007 at 8:40 am

In my opinion the single largest problem with sports in town is the lack of oversight and accountability. Personally I have a dozen seasons of coaching experience in a couple sports in Pleasanton.

No city official has ever been able to come to me in years of asking to tell me specifically how they manage sports organizations other than to turn over the sport and fields to the organizations. Ask about oversight and accountability and their eyes glass over…unless you're talking about teams using fields too soon after it rains…grass we know how to fight for.

Ballistic, Rage, LL, Pony, et al are given access to fields and our youth in a manner which basically subcontracts youth sports from the town to the organizations.
There are many, many great people doing good work in these organizations but no one to look over the shoulder of the clubs as they operate sports in our town. Despite the efforts by many there are a few powerful individuals that can shape a program in to something ugly at the club or team level.
Too many kids are overused and athletically abused by the competitive sports. Parents are held hostage by the prestige of their kid playing at a high level and the hope of a college scholarship. There are many examples of punitive action against players and families that "speak out"...which might explain why this thread has had so little dialogue.
It is easier to go to a neighboring club and get a higher quality experience than to stay and slug it out. Get your kid through those years, don't make waves in case you need to come back and leave it to the next wave of parents…though they often come through uninitiated only to repeat the cycle.

The schools are somewhat better if only for the fact that there is a civic chain of command. It has been said by a high school principle and vice principle however that "we hire coaches and turn the program over to them"...with little or no school supervision of non-teacher coaches. If a coach needs investigating because of improper language or attitude...or worse allegations there is little done by way of serious follow up by some school officials.
Having coached and cheered four kids through various sports in town from the highest level to the least involved I can say that there have been a few excellent times mixed in with largely a disturbing experience.

By their nature and emotional involvement parents and coaches will likely go unchanged and unchecked…it is the responsibility of the city and school board to make sports "safe" for all our young athletes.


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Posted by Amy
a resident of Apperson Ridge
on Dec 5, 2007 at 2:15 pm

Burt, can you tell us what made the experience disturbing?
My sons have played Ballistic soccer at the non-competitive level. We've had a good experience. I watched boys practicing at Amador Park in the competitive level. I did not get the feeling they were having fun. I noticed a boy I knew, and I asked his mom how it liked it. She said it was his first year playing in the competitive level, and he didn't like it. I told her the atmosphere seemed pretty grim while I was watching, and she nodded.
My boys always say they had fun at practice, and they look like they are. We have played in the non-competitive level because we like soccer to be low key and fun.
Still, we're surprised by the things the parents say to their kids while they're playing soccer. (Except for one, the coaches have been excellent.) The parents yell demeaning things to their children. I can't imagine yelling to my son in front of his teammates that he's playing 'like a girl', or that he's 'still sleeping' and various other insults.


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Posted by Waterlogged
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 5, 2007 at 6:45 pm

My children swam for many years (portion of comment removed by Pleasanton Weekly staff). Although we do have some good memories and met a lot of nice parents it was huge time commitment for our children and for us. At the lower levels the coaches were supportive and encouraging however once the kids reached Junior High School and High School the coaches paid most of their attention to the faster swimmers at the expense of the majority of the team. This in itself was deflating to the slower swimmers along with some of the erratic decisions and disciplines tactics used when the coaches were in a bad mood. For example, one time a female coach got irritated with some of the kids who weren't listening, instead of dealing with these boys only, she kicked all of the kids (30 + kids) out of the pool, swearing at them profusely and made them sit on the bleachers poolside (in November) for an hour and a half. The head coach refused to listen to parent complaints about this and claimed that the kids needed to be more respectful of the coach, this was after several other incidents where she swore at them and then went outside to the parking lot and sat in her truck to "calm down". The most ridiculous aspect of this program is the early morning practices which required swimmers to be at the pool at 4:00 AM 2 - 4 mornings a week. The attendance criteria was so ridiculous and whenever the head coach was questioned he claimed that was what it takes for them to be elite level swimmers. Afternoon practices were 2 1/2 hours in the pool plus additional dry land training and early Saturday practices as well...all this plus keeping up with school work and being a teenager. As my children went to college and swam on teams, they never encountered any other swimmers who trained for so many hours (especially so early in the AM)on their club teams when they were growing up...and guess what? A lot of those kids are the ones setting NCAA records and heading to International meets. If a little is good a lot is not better in regard to this excessive training schedule. As I look back on this experience I wish as parents we would have said no thanks to this so called "elite" experience. Our kids had a lot more fun swimming on the High School team, at least there the coaching was more evenly distributed amongst the entire team instead of being devoted to the "chosen" few.

As with other organized teams there was always an inner circle of parents who had a direct line to the coach, usually their kids were the ones getting the attention (surprise!). My advice to parents is take back your lives, have your kids swim summer league and High School. Very few swimmers get Division 1 Scholarships and there is really no such thing as a full ride for swimmers except for a select few. In reality, how many people end up as Professional Swimmers? None!


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Posted by rick
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Dec 5, 2007 at 8:50 pm

I have been shocked by what parents and coaches do at soccer games.
An opposing coach called my daugther a "shrimp" which really upset her.

Also, two parents got in a shoving match at another game

Thats all


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Posted by Concerned about sports
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2007 at 10:31 am

It is so sad that there are parents that think that their children deserve to play just bec they are coaching, we come from a family who has experienced multiple heartache trying to get our children involved and well rounded yet those parents that constantly play their child even if it is obvious that there are other kids much better than theirs are on the bench.

HS sports are even worse, the schools need to re evaluate the programs, take only those that deserve to play, if you have no plans of playing a kid, cut him it is far better than spending their precious time practicing and being punching bags to others then sit on the bench, if it is bus money the school needs then shame on them, they would rather have the kids lose their self esteam and confidence for a few bucks.

Parents who suck up to the schools, ( you know who you guys are ) it is embarassing that you can sit and watch your child make a fool of themselves, they are not getting the best experience as well... other kids talk about them and think they need daddy or mommy to make it.. reality is they become bigger losers in the real world bec they have no friends.

League sports is hard bec most are volunteers, just check out CYO many kids have decided not to play because of the choices they make on who plays the A team, it is such a shame that those who can represent our town to the best of their talents don't want to play bec their are kids who are not deserving and dilute the teams effectiveness and success.

Unfortunately.. there is never going to be a fix... coaches need to have hearts, and need to look beyond just their own children, it is sad that your child is not liked by their peers bec of this.. it is all the parents fault.


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Posted by Kathleen
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Dec 6, 2007 at 11:15 am

Editor: You can already see that this blog is going to get out of control with the suggestion by "Name Them" to start naming names in an anonymous blog. All sports leagues in Pleasanton have a venue to air complaints. May I suggest you make these people register prior to letting this get out of control. We are talking about volunteers here, 95% who give a lot to our community and do their best.


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Posted by Joe deRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 6, 2007 at 12:15 pm

There needs to be accountability mostly for board members and also for Coaches that use their power to arbitrarily do what they want for no reason at all. My Family and I have are all victims of this "power play" by the less than weak board members (portion of comment removed by Pleasanton Weekly staff) we do not want to give a dime to any organization that supports this kind of behavior by board members, we are not letting this go away easily, these board members will be held accountable for their unfair actions. What has happened to our family has happened to many others, but they chose to go away which I can understand, this is a nightmare, but is not a waste of time if our actions can help other families in the future. There are far too many board members in almost all the sports programs, most are close nit friends which is problem, most have husband and wives which is another problem..... It is no longer truly for the kids, but this is what the organizations will claim? What this is really about is the board members protecting their interest to insure their kids get the best possible treatment and play time, this protection will truly hurt any kid in the long run as it will give them the false feeling that they are actually a great player when in fact they are no better than the next child, very sad.. My Wife and I have coached and managed many teams in different Cities and have been a member of boards as well, we never listen to others when it comes to making the right decision or opinion of someone else, we always make up my own mind based on getting to know someone or finding out the true "facts". I have to say that Pleasanton has been the worst experience for our family when it comes to dealing with the board members within the sports we play. We have never held anything against any child even when Parents may have disagreed with us, on the other hand I have talked to several parents where they have spoke up to board members or Coaches and have been outcasted. (portion of comment removed by Pleasanton Weekly staff) What it mostly comes down to is pure jealousy, for majority board members sports is all they have and do with their kids, again I said majority not all. Here is my recommendation: The City should adopt a program that would have a board made up of say 5 or so individuals that have no interest in said sports organization, this would be what is called a mediation panel which would be open to any issues with board members, Coaches and parents to discuss without the fear of being out casted. Currently Parents and Families have no options, I have contacted everyone from the organizations that these sports programs are chartered by to the City rec. dept. and get no help, no one wants to listen and do the right thing, Parents and families have no one on our side. It is truly time that the Parents have some rights and have someone on their side protecting this kind of immature actions from happening, I could go on and on.……..In fact I think I will bring this up at a City Council meeting soon and see what they think about it, heck maybe I could put it together, at least if I put something together I know it would be fair and impartial. Keep an eye open….


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Posted by Just let them Play
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2007 at 12:29 pm

I feel saddened and sickened by all the politics that go on in the sports arena. Lets face it... what are the odds that any of these kids will be professional soccer players, basketball players so on and so forth. If by luck our community happenes to have a potential star that could go all the way, I would embrace this and help that child get as much exposure as possible even if they were better than my own...we need to realize that children would rather be accepted by others than have more play time bec mommy or daddy say they deserve it bec they volunteer.

My husband and I have volunteered to coach, and as much as possible we try to make sure that everyone is played, maybe not equally but atleast get to play their minimum time. Some parents need to realize as well that if you put your child in a competitive league and they are not at that level they are also setting them up, they get teased and sometimes hate attending the practices and games, let them make the choice of what they want to do not force them, it is not only fair to your child but it is unfair for those who are there to learn and get better.

I guess in real life nothing is ever going to make situations like this get better unless the people who are in positions to make the changes are not willing to change at all for the better of the children and community.


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Posted by President of one of these groups
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2007 at 12:41 pm

Joe,

I am president of one of these organizations co-sponsored by the City and you have not contacted us. (Also, I served for four years on the board of another one of these organizations you refer to.)

My first comment to you is how about getting on the board of one of these organizations so that you understand the by-laws and policies of the organization as well as what co-sponsored by the City means as well as how it relates to the running of these organizations. Both organizations, we had/have to beg and pester people to volunteer to serve. Rarely, has there been an actual election. Its easy to criticize but remember all these people volunteer their time for what ever reason.

Also, no one is forced to have their child be in any of the co-sponsored organizations. Lucky for us, there are lots of choices in the immediate area. The organization I'm president of has many chidren from surrounding communities because they feel our organization better supports their needs. We've also had children go to nearby organizations because they felt their child better served there. Both ARE OKAY. The point here is that everyone is free to choose what they feel is best for their child.

I, too, call on the editor to shut this blog down as its easy to identify people being talked about in the last post and not fair to them.


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Posted by Step Up
a resident of Del Prado
on Dec 6, 2007 at 1:00 pm

To all those who feel that any youth sports league is not run to your liking, please stop complaining and get involved in your league's board. Like all volunteer-based organizations, many of our youth sport leagues are run by a handful of people who end up doing far more than they would like, simply because too few people are willing to step up and do the necessary work.

These leagues do not get organized on their own. Many people volunteer their time and talent coaching, and that's great. But there is soooo much more that needs to be done. Many do not realize or appreciate that these board members work year-round to ensure the kids can play come Opening Day.

So please, stop complaining and get involved to effect some positive change.


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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 6, 2007 at 2:49 pm

Posted by President of one of these groups, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood..
Can we have a name to this blog?
probably not for fear of being out casted yourself?

The sad fact is that the People that really care about the kids and that really believe it should be about the kids, all kids not just a select few usually are the ones out casted. Becoming a board member is not an easy thing, first you must be good friends with the other board members who know everyone else within the sports community, this is nothing new as its been this way for years, then you must be sure never to disagree even if not the truth and the total wrong thing to do because those so called friends will make sure you are no longer part of the organization, its their goal when they feel be-trayed..."power play" comes into effect. No names have been mentioned, nor do I think that this blog needs to be shut down, the only People that would want to shut it down are the People that don't like hearing the truth. What comes around goes around, these people that use the little power they have to push People around is short lived, after sports they have nothing to focus on.....poor People. Being a co-sponsored group by the City Council does not give these organizations the right to treat people the way they feel that they can... again I will urge that the City Council put together a mediation panel to protect Parents and kids from some of the board members with the wrong agenda.


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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 6, 2007 at 2:49 pm

Posted by President of one of these groups, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood..
Can we have a name to this blog?
probably not for fear of being out casted yourself?

The sad fact is that the People that really care about the kids and that really believe it should be about the kids, all kids not just a select few usually are the ones out casted. Becoming a board member is not an easy thing, first you must be good friends with the other board members who know everyone else within the sports community, this is nothing new as its been this way for years, then you must be sure never to disagree even if not the truth and the total wrong thing to do because those so called friends will make sure you are no longer part of the organization, its their goal when they feel be-trayed..."power play" comes into effect. No names have been mentioned, nor do I think that this blog needs to be shut down, the only People that would want to shut it down are the People that don't like hearing the truth. What comes around goes around, these people that use the little power they have to push People around is short lived, after sports they have nothing to focus on.....poor People. Being a co-sponsored group by the City Council does not give these organizations the right to treat people the way they feel that they can... again I will urge that the City Council put together a mediation panel to protect Parents and kids from some of the board members with the wrong agenda.


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Posted by John
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2007 at 3:30 pm

Not sure that this forum is the best source, but... My concern revolves around Pleasanton RAGE Girls Soccer program. My thinking is that young girls from Pleasanton would aspire to play on the Division 1 U18 team. A look at the roster of "Pleasaton" RAGE top program shows a total of 3 girls from Pleasanton, 3 of the 18 players. Is this what we really want from a program that uses this city's anme even in the title of the organization? Should the top program be a program that represents Pleasanton? Isn't this program connected with the City? Just doesn't make sense.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Dec 6, 2007 at 3:48 pm

To the person who suggested to post names here, if you wanted to do something like that may I recommend spending the time, energy, and your own money to do so on a website you own? I think if you did so here it would violate the Terms of Use, as it should. I'd hate to see this public forum become an internet-version of a lynch mob.


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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 6, 2007 at 4:35 pm

John

To answer your question, you are correct it does not make sense. If it were truly about the Girls in Pleasanton then the entire team would be Pleasanton Girls? When "some" Coaches and organizations say it's all about the kids and the leagues state that its about player development???..as read below taken from the Pleasanton Girls Rage website...it's not about that, it's about winning for most. you will see the same statement on every sport site, I am just using this one as an example.

From website:

"The Pleasanton Rage is an all girls' soccer club that makes team and player development its central focus. We offer challenging programs at all levels that demonstrate a strong commitment to the development of the whole player including the technical, tactical, physical, and psychological areas of our player's development within the team environment. The Pleasanton Rage is committed to being the best girls' soccer club in America at helping our teams and players maximize their development toward their potential"

Let's be honest, the fact of the matter is that being a Coach is very rewarding in any sport and yes its okay to say its nice to win as well. I can tell you that the teams my Wife and I have Coached in the past were always the smallest with less experience and they always prevailed, not because we drove them to "win ...win...win"" but rather because they truly had fun and enjoyed playing for us. Its not always about the sport itself and the ever ending practice to become a winner, its really about just being a kid truly having fun really enjoying what you are doing... If a child or anyone else does not like you then they will not do their best, plain and simple. There are so many things that you can do to build a winning team, unfortunately many people do not know how to go about it and for the ones that do come off as a threat to others.


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Posted by president of one of these groups
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2007 at 5:13 pm

Joe,

I have no interest in posting my name to this blog so that you can attack either me or the organization.

Once again, the two boards I've served on have a very tough time getting people to serve on the board. People aren't willing to volunteer unless they feel it directly benefits their child. (I would guess that just about every President has the same issue.) I can also tell you that we've had many board votes that have not been unanimous which is great with me but more importantly a sign that people feel they can disagree. I'm not sure what you're basing your comments on becoming a board member is difficult to do because that just hasn't been my experience in either organization. Contrary, both boards I've served on were glad to have a new face to step up and help with the organization. You have no idea of some of the issues that come up from parents a board has to deal with.

And again, no one is required to put their child in one of these co-sponsored organizations. There are choices. If people are unhappy, they should either step up and volunteer for a board postition to affect change or look at other options. Its kind of like a job situation. If one isn't satisfied with their employment situation, they look for a new job. An organization isn't going to be all things to all people--be realistic.

I also think that first people need to understand what co-sponsored by the City means so that they understand roles here. I don't seem like people here really understand what's involved and what that means.


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Posted by soccer mom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2007 at 6:01 pm

Just FYI, BUSC has plenty of paid positions. Not all of these poor souls are "volunteers". I also have been very unhappy with this particular board (ptown boys soccer), who I have dealt directly with. But I feel as if my hands are tied- my kids want to play soccer and I don't want to drive to another city. I'm glad this topic has been brought up.


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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 6, 2007 at 6:59 pm

To:
"I have no interest in posting my name to this blog so that you can attack either me or the organization"

I am available and willing to be part of your Board, have an opening?

I am not here to attack anyone really, I have been attacked over and over by board members all with false allegations so I know how it feels as well as others in the Pleasanton area, the only difference is I am willing to continue to pursue while others chose to take another road which I don't really blame them, I am not afraid to put my name out there and continue to do what is right, I went to San Ramon with my girls for Softball and you know they were wide open to the idea of me getting involved until someone from another board within Pleasanton ??? out for that almighty power play actually slandered my character at a tournament to members of that board with yet more false allegations, again just facts here. I speak nothing but the truth about all that I say with only facts that I can definitely back up.

As for BUSC soccer Mom, we feel your pain...


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Posted by Rodney King
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Dec 6, 2007 at 8:23 pm

Can't we all just get along?


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Posted by president of one of these groups
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2007 at 9:08 pm

Joe,

Thanks for the offer but at the moment my board is full. Also, our by-laws required a board member to be a member in good standing of the organization. Not sure if you qualify.

Soccer mom is correct that almost all if not all of the sports organizations have paid positions, including mine. Its unfortunate but become a necessity as fewer people seem to have the time to volunteer. So not only do boards have to deal with parents but now employees. Consider hiring/firing, job descriptions, performanc criteria, salary administration, absence policies, workman's comp, etc not to mention payroll only adds to the role of the board. Having paid positions also makes budgeting and financial management that much more important. I'm not complaining just trying to point out what people in volunteer board postions have to deal with which is definitely becoming more complex.

I've now taken the approach that when someone either offers up a suggestion on how something should be done or complains, I say great idea I could really use your ideas on the Board. Mostly I get "deer in the headlights" look like who me oh i couldn't possibly do that as i don't have the time but also, I have gotten some really good people with that approach. My point is that its easy to complain or say you should do this but few people are willing to help put the rubber to the road or affect change.

The organization I'm president of is certainly not perfect in meeting the needs of all the children but we do try our best. Often, the parents aren't happy for a variety of reasons but if you speak to the children, they're totally happy. I see a lot of parents trying to live through their child's accomplishments. I could go on and on from elite level to children in it for weight control purposes but enough. My point is ask yourself if you're contributing to the organization or part of the problem and make sure you answer honestly.



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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 7, 2007 at 12:52 pm

To:

"I have no interest in posting my name to this blog so that you can attack either me or the organization"

As I have indicated:

I am available and willing to be part of your Board I am sure, and would not expect to get paid. The problem is a lot of board members want to complain about how much they have to do, get over it. This is suppose to be a volunteer position and you should always strive to do your best, as my Wife and I always do, not to pick and choose what to do and only do it at 50% effort, good boards need people that want to give 100% all the time, believe me given the chance I would make this happen, I have started orgs. in the past that continue to run smoothly, if they have issues they call me in, again "fact". but of course you find unjustified reasons "member in good standing" to not allow me to be part of your board. Come on do you really expect me/the Families to believe that you would actually want new board members in a position of power? Look at all the boards in Pleasanton, how many have had the same key "power" players on the board for longer than 3 or 4 years?

What justifies being in good standing?
What about board members that use these "power plays", certainly this would not be someone who is in good standing of the organization or would it?

Here is something that happened to me by a board member/s of the PGSL, again "fact", yet I guess this does not fall under a board member being in good standing with the org?

Board member/s of this organization actually sat in the stands of a game and continued to talk about me to other Parents and board members to insure that I had no chance to be part of board or Coach another team, my ex Wife and Daughter actually heard everything and turned to this person/s who then said "oh I didn't know you were there". I continue to hear from other People on how this still continues, the sad thing is this person isn't even a Pleasanton resident, but yet Husband and Wife are on a Pleasanton Sports board? Anyway, my Wife and I approached the PGSL board about this unacceptable behavior by a board member and asked for their resignation, you know what they sad? funny you may actually know as you may be part of that board, how would I/we know?

Board response:
We have handled the situation and a letter of apology was written to the board, no other action taken....go figure. A letter to the board, but yet not to me, my Family or to the People of the league to which these lies have been spread, but I guess good enough to be in good standings? you are truly crazy and will continue to make excuses as most board members do to justify their actions. Bottom line to be a board member in good standing is actually to be in good standing with all the current board members, acting like you really like them when in fact you really don't and always agreeing with the key board members even if you disagree, those my friend are the "facts". I have many recommendations that would warrant me being a great board member, but its people like you that cause the real problems.

The only reason I would not be in good standing with any org. is jealousy for being able to do something others would not be able to do and that's bring honesty and true integrity to where its truly needed. The sad thing is that it is the organizations loss, not mine, but again let's get defensive and make sure this Joe DeRossett never gets do be involved in any org in Pleasanton and to do so we will make sure we spread the word..... you know since I have been involved with Pleasanton Sports, I actually feel like Patrick Swazey in the movie Road House, seen it? if not you should, this will also shed some reality what truly happens to a lot of parents and families in organized sports doing the wrong things....

Thanks for reading
We all know thats it's a lot easier to do the wrong thing, it usually takes a lot less effort.....


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Posted by president of one of these groups
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 7, 2007 at 2:36 pm

First I am not in anyway associated with PGSL. Second our board members don't get paid.

A member in good standing is defined in our by-laws basically as not having any outstanding financial obligations to the organization and obviously a child as a member of the organization. Also, our by-laws prohibit more then one member of a family serving on the board at the same time. So there are ways to protect the organization through the by-laws. If its as you say, the first place i would start is with the bylaws and what criteria are around being on the board. there should be a section in the bylaws about how to change the bylaws which any member should be able to initiate a proposed change that would be subject to a vote of entire organization. Good luck.


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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 7, 2007 at 3:50 pm

To: Posted by president of one of these groups.

I thought you did have a paid position based on what you wrote above?

"Soccer mom is correct that almost all if not all of the sports organizations have paid positions, including mine"

It sounds like your organization is better than most, by not allowing more than 1 member of a family to serve on the board at the same time, this is very good. I am assuming we are talking about both the Executive and the regualr board members? I am sure any member can propose a change to the By-laws, but this seams very unlikely as many boards are all close friends. Sounds like your org. is a step above... I still think that all organizations should have a mediation panel in place to help people like me when it comes to the truth and facts against a "pure power play"... maybe soon....


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Posted by president one of these groups
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 7, 2007 at 4:12 pm

Yes, we do have paid positions but they are not voting members of the board. My understanding is that nearly all of the co-sponsored organizations have paid positions that are not voting members of the board but i could be wrong about the voting part. What i was trying to say is that as a board not only do we have to deal with parents of the children but also the whole range of issues associated with employees, as volunteers. And yes, there can and are definitely issues associated with paying positions.

Yes, only one member of a family can serve on our board which does include the executive board. Again, have you read the by-laws of the organization you are concerned with? What do they say? They are the governing document on how the organization is to be run. Ususally they can only be changed with a vote by the membership not the board to protect the organization. Start there to see where things stand. BTW, when questions come up, my experience is that is where the City staff start, also.

I think our board does a pretty good job keeping the focus on the program and the children and the needs. However, we do have issues and things we could do better as do all the organizations. One thing I've found is a lot depends on the set of strengths that the various members of the board have at any given time. For example, a board could have several people with strong financial backgrounds which help with budgeting, reporting, etc but may suffer on the communication side with newsletters, etc. Anyway, start with the bylaws.


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Posted by Enough Already!
a resident of Castlewood
on Dec 7, 2007 at 4:36 pm

To Joe and President......

Look at yourselves. Do you not have anything else in your life that could possibly apply more of your time and energy towards than sitting on this site writing a book about dysfunctional boards?

Perhaps you're the problem?? GET A LIFE! THERE IS MORE TO LIFE THAN SPORTS!


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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 7, 2007 at 4:57 pm

To:
Posted by Enough Already! No Name?

You must be all wrapped up into sports yourself, are you a board member as well??? A matter of fact this is part of where the Jelousy I spoke about comes in, for these problem board members (not President above) they only have sports and nothing else, so when they see a functional happy family that is always on the go, they don't like that and want to try and bring People like us down to there unhappy miserable level.

again more facts
Thanks for your un-constructive comment


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Posted by Burt
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 8, 2007 at 8:45 am

Much of this illustrates one of my original points.

These organizations usually do have a process or board to review problems...but it is a fundamentally self policing activity.

Since these are co-sponsored organizations I believe there should be more city oversight. Organizations or individuals within that have consistent feedback provided to the city should be accountable to the city. My family has voted with our feet and moved to neighboring clubs for a higher quality experience. We have also had athletes stay in Pleasanton organizations and used the available processes to protect the athletes interest. It's way too much work to keep overzealous interests from corrupting the experience.
I've volunteered for a dozen seasons or more in clubs of both genders. There are many, many good people doing great work and a mostly volunteer level. Unfortunately there are others who dominate the culture and without active city oversight they can operate the organizations in their own best interests.

The schools at least have a chain of command...makes the feedback process a bit easier. Off the top of my head though, based on experience with both high schools, I'd say those teams led by educators seem to have less questionable activity than those coached by non educators. Teachers get observed in the classroom from time-to-time but it's pretty darn rare that a vice principal or principal shows up at a try out or practice.

It's basic. Supervised and accountable people perform better.


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Posted by Burt
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 8, 2007 at 8:45 am

Much of this illustrates one of my original points.

These organizations usually do have a process or board to review problems...but it is a fundamentally self policing activity.

Since these are co-sponsored organizations I believe there should be more city oversight. Organizations or individuals within that have consistent feedback provided to the city should be accountable to the city. My family has voted with our feet and moved to neighboring clubs for a higher quality experience. We have also had athletes stay in Pleasanton organizations and used the available processes to protect the athletes interest. It's way too much work to keep overzealous interests from corrupting the experience.
I've volunteered for a dozen seasons or more in clubs of both genders. There are many, many good people doing great work and a mostly volunteer level. Unfortunately there are others who dominate the culture and without active city oversight they can operate the organizations in their own best interests.

The schools at least have a chain of command...makes the feedback process a bit easier. Off the top of my head though, based on experience with both high schools, I'd say those teams led by educators seem to have less questionable activity than those coached by non educators. Teachers get observed in the classroom from time-to-time but it's pretty darn rare that a vice principal or principal shows up at a try out or practice.

It's basic. Supervised and accountable people perform better.


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Posted by Quit Whinning
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 8, 2007 at 6:34 pm

I am so sick of hearing all the whinning. Board members, coaches and other volunteers of these various sports organizations in town are the ones that keep things running. I have served on various Boards and have seen these same Board members pick up the slack when additional volunteers are needed. They may not be perfect and there might be "clicks", but unless you try to change procedures and policies - quit complaining. It is like voting - unless you vote you have no reason to complain. Most of the time it is the parent/parents who have the issues and kids just want to play.


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Posted by Sporty Mom
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 10, 2007 at 8:28 am

Bottom line is clicks, no clicks the kids are always on the losing end...come on how many of these kids really have a chance to go pro?Just let them play.

Parents who have other agendas such as making sure their child has the most play time , is on the best team even though not deserving... wake up call, you are setting your child up for a lot of heartache, they not only will be talked about, they will be teased and they will never gain the respect that they deserve because of your making sure that they get what they DO NOT DESERVE>>>


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Posted by Joe DeRossett
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 10, 2007 at 10:09 am

To: Sporty Mom

well said, People protecting thier kids and building them up with false hope in the end will only hurt the kids in the long run. Life has far to many challenges for both kids now and whats to come as they get older, protecting your child from realty is truly sad as well. I believe a lot of these "power play" board members probably did'nt have such a great childhood when it came to sports and truly do live through thier kids, probably the last to be picked on a team, always picked on in school ...whatever the reason, I am sure that these "power play" board members have a few.....and now look all grown up "or at least they believe that" and now they have some power and are going to make sure for everyone who cose them last as a kid or for everyone who picked on them are going to pay and thier child will have it different. These People are to shallow and selfish to really see how this will effect thier own childs Life as well as the children they take actions on because the Parents of said child may disagree with them. These board members know what type of People they are, some are very dis-honest and will say or do anything to be right no matter how wrong, they will always be the same.....pethetic. It is time for change, these organizations must be held accountable, medeation panel.....


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Posted by Semper Fi
a resident of Mohr Elementary School
on Dec 17, 2007 at 10:38 pm

I'm amazed at the parents that complain during the year, yet fail to do anything about it. Why did they do this or that, who make that stupid call. Its the numerous parents who complain during the year, yet fail to make it to a board meeting or appear when we elect the next years board members. Its great when a few do the work of many and put happy faces on 100s of kids not only from Pleasanton but the Tri Valley, Before you place blame, look at the preplanning and execution that goes into the efforts of a few to support many. The labor of a few enable your childern to enjoy somehting they will remember for many years. Before you complain walk in the footsteps of a board member and put in the time and effort that they have.


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Posted by soccer mom
a resident of Birdland
on Dec 18, 2007 at 10:24 am

BUSC board members have always been in it to benefit THEIR kids. They get them on D1 or if they are really pathetic....they move them up a year. We have seen it for years. Once they have their kids dialed out...about the high school level, they bail out. The kids need to earn their spot on a team and their play time if it is a competitive team as opposed to rec. These kids will never be able to stand on their own in life if Daddy and Mommy are pulling the strings!! Why don't you people let your kids make it on their own!!


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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Dec 23, 2007 at 3:39 pm

Can we all get along? Tee hee hee, tee hee hee! Happy Qwanza!


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Posted by A multi sport parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Dec 24, 2007 at 9:20 am

A big thank you to all of those parents who do serve on the various boards, who do volunter to coach or help out the various teams in so many different ways. I'm guessing that the various people who are complaining above are the same parents who drop off their kids at the curb and pick them up at the curb at the end of practice. Are the same parents who are late picking up their kids after practice causing the coach to sit around and wait to ensure your child gets home safe. Your the parent who can't give up some of yout free time to take on of the team partent positions required to run a team, thus causing the same parents to take on multiple volunteer duties.


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Posted by Burt
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 26, 2007 at 9:39 am

I agree with "Multi-sport parent". Big thanks to the many great volunteers.
I disagree with the generalization however...not all parents with concerns are of the drive by variety. After multiple kids and more than a dozen coaching seasons, countless fund raisers and other activities I can say with great confidence that some programs here in town are heavily biased, in some cases unethical and very likely corrupt. In my opinion it all has to do with the lack of proper oversight from city or school administrators.
Get in, get involved, you'll see. It's certainly not all sports or all personnel volunteer or otherwise...but it's there and tolerated via administrative indifference.


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