Athletics At Risk?

Arizona’s K-12 Funding Crisis and its Impact on High School Athletics

By Cory Kamerschak | Dec. 8, 2015

The Mountain Pointe High School Boys Basketball team is doing everything they can to jump through the financial hoops to make sure all of their athletes can participate.

"I wouldn't be the slightest bit surprised if graduation rates sharply decreased if the day ever comes where athletic programs have to be eliminated"

-Hosea Graham, Mountain Pointe Boys Basketball Coach

"I'm not worried about sports being cut. I'm worried about the opportunity for kids to participate if they can't eventually afford it."

-Bruce Kipper, Principal of Mountain Pointe High School

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Coaches Aren’t Letting Low Funding Hinder Their Athletes Opportunity to Participate

The K-12 funding crisis in Arizona is taking its toll on more than just the classroom.

While it’s no secret that the decrease of funds hinders an educator’s ability to adequately teach their students, the lack of funds also means drastic changes to a school’s athletic programs.

The boys basketball program at Mountain Pointe High School in Phoenix is certainly feeling the impact of low funding.

Although some of the other high schools within the district charge upward of $400, Mountain Pointe still charges their varsity players $140 to participate.

Not all of the kids are able to pay these fees, so coaches are looking for alternative methods to ensure their athletes get to play.

Mountain Pointe Head Coach, Hosea Graham, has had to rely heavily on fundraising and at times even used money from his own salary.

Coach Graham feels that the idea of athletic programs being in jeopardy raises a much larger issue than just kids not playing sports anymore.

“You know for some of these kids, the only motivation to put forth a solid effort at school is because they know they have to maintain a certain GPA in order to keep playing sports,” Graham said.


The amount of funds remaining in Mountain Pointe's 2015-2016 athletic budget

Copy Editor | Mindy Riesenberg

Media Editor | Cory Kamerschak

Graphic Editor | Nicole DeRienzo

Web Editor | Eddie Keller

A collection of stories created by the 2015-2016 graduate students

The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication

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