The message is the same almost every year, but Milton Activities Director Brian Hammil still wants to remind people what he thinks high school sports is all about.
On Monday, the Milton School District’s Facebook page posted a press release which read the following:
“Every August brings the excitement of a new season of high school athletics. The athletes, coaches, parents and fans are eager to get into the stands and support their Red Hawks. The Milton Activities Department is asking for your assistance in providing positive sportsmanship at our events. The involvement of our students in athletics and activities contributes to the development of their value system. Trustworthiness, citizenship, caring, fairness and respect are lifetime values that are taught through educationally based activities and are fundamental principles of good character. With these principles, the spirit of competition thrives, fueled by honest rivalry, courteous relations and grateful acceptance of the results.
Milton High School and the Badger Conference has made a commitment to promote good sportsmanship by student-athletes, coaches, and spectators at all athletic events. Profanity, degrading remarks and intimidating actions directed at officials or competitors will not be tolerated and are grounds for removal from the event site. The score from any contest is generally forgotten over time, but the actions of players, coaches and spectators are remembered. The next time you attend a Milton school event, please remember to sport a winning attitude and support our athletes, coaches, game officials and event workers.”
“Nothing changes with expectations,” Hammil said regarding the press release. “As ADs, we wanted to make sure everyone received the same message, which basically is, this is high school sports. The kids are trying their best. The coaches are trying their best. And the officials are trying their best. Sit back and enjoy the ride.”
Although the message is the same each season, Hammil noted a new year also means new players, parents and coaches.
“The beauty of high school sports is that the kids and families change every year, so getting the message out each year is important,” he said. “We’ve seen an uptick nationally with problems at youth sporting events, and we don’t want to be the next one that goes viral on social media.”
Even with the concern, Hammil believes Milton has done a good job displaying sportsmanship.
“I think that our coaches have done a good job of working on sportsmanship with our athletes,” Hammil said. “And for the most part, our adults have been very supportive and well-behaved spectators. Even when there is a small issue, it gets resolved quickly and easily. The residents of the School District of Milton understand the value of high school sports and the role it plays in the development of our kids.”