The aim of the extracurricular athletic program at St. Rita is to promote teamwork, enjoyment of sports, physical fitness and knowledge of the rules of the game. The overriding philosophy of athletics is that "any student that wants to play may play." The Athletic Director supervises and coordinates the athletic program at St. Rita with the support of the Sports Board and the Booster Club.
The Play Like A Champion Today™ Sports as Ministry (PLC) initiative supports Catholic leagues and dioceses in promoting: athletics as ministry to youth and families, building teams as Christian communities, character development, spiritual growth, intrinsic motivation and responsible decision-making. Attendance at a PLC workshop is mandatory for all DPL coaches.
At St. Rita, our athletic philosophy is to allow every child an opportunity to play if so desired. As a result, there are no cuts made in any sport - that is to say, every child will be placed on a team if they wish to participate in a particular sport. In 5th grade, it is DPL and St. Rita policy to split teams evenly in those sports in which more than one team is participating. This means that every attempt is made to evenly distribute talented and not so talented individuals across the board. In the 6th, 7th and 8th grades, teams are divided into Division 1, Division 2 and in basketball Division 3 teams, based on talent and competitiveness. Team selection methods may vary from sport to sport. For example, in volleyball, camps will be conducted before the season where the 6th, 7th and 8th grade players will be evaluated throughout to place them at their appropriate competitive level. In basketball, tryouts are conducted for each grade to place them appropriately. Baseball and softball are similar in that the teams are divided up according to talent and competitive level after a tryout. Ultimately, it is the athletic director's decision as to where a child is placed from 6th grade through the 8th grade.
Team Commitment, Practices, & Games
Most sports at St. Rita follow the typical format of two practices a week with a game or games on the weekends - either Saturday or Sunday and sometimes both days. If your child is involved in other "outside" teams (i.e. select or recreational soccer, baseball, basketball etc.) you should strongly consider the time commitment involved before your child chooses to participate. It is the hope and expectation that if your child plays for a St. Rita team, he/she will participate in both practices and games as a priority. It is hard to justify allowing a child to participate on a team if the commitment to attend is not there. While many coaches are willing to work with those that play in outside leagues, it is our strong desire that during a particular season a child puts St. Rita sports first, if at all possible. Coaches have the leeway to curtail playing time as deemed appropriate in situations where practices and games are missed. In 5th and 6th grade volleyball, basketball and, to a certain extent, baseball and softball, there are (DPL) mandated playing time requirements for each player. At the varsity level, those requirements no longer exist (other than D3 basketball).
Academic eligibility is reported at the end of the first three quarters and when progress reports are issued (see eligibility section in handbook). Ineligibility prohibits a student from both games and practices, including suiting out and sitting on the bench. Any student that misses school for illness will not be able to participate in a game or practice on that same day.