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Commentary: LAUSD uses too many walk-on coaches

LA School Report | March 2, 2015

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Los-Angeles-Times-logoThe Los Angeles Times| By Eric Sondheimer 

Here’s a statistic from the Los Angeles Unified School District that should set off alarm bells: 58 percent of its coaches from 83 high schools were walk-ons or non-certificated employees during the 2013-14 school year. Only 42 percent were teachers, according to Trenton Cornelius, the district’s coordinator of athletics.

Even more troubling, 50 percent of the schools no longer have an instructional period for their teams. That means the students are forced to practice only after school, get no class credit and coaches receive no compensation other than their paltry stipend that ranges from $2,811 for football head coach to $2,512 for basketball, baseball, soccer and track.

The consequences are clear. Walk-ons don’t have the same access to students during the school day as teachers. They can’t monitor academics or discipline issues as closely as teachers. If someone wants to make additional money while teaching, anything but coaching is more lucrative, from tutoring to coaching travel teams.

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