Dear Parents of U12-14 athletes,
On behalf of the SBVC board of directors, I want to say we are looking forward to the upcoming season as all indications are we are going to have a very robust turn-out for the U12-U14 tryouts. I would like to help you gain a full understanding of what the board and management are doing for the U12-U14 age brackets.
SBVC is a non-profit organization with the simple but powerful mission of helping children and young adults gain positive self-esteem, enhance physical fitness, health and develop critical life skills through competitive volleyball. The program is designed to be fun and focus on skills development for the very young athletes and evolves into a competitive travel program for the older age groups. As a non-profit I ask that you look at us much like a co-operative, wherein the stakeholders of parents, athletes, coaches, directors and the board have joined together to produce a highly organized platform to best serve the community and execute the mission. Through the non-profit structure we are able to allocate what would be profits back into the community in the form of lowers costs, financial aid and enrichment. The board is 100% volunteer and the only paid people are the directors and coaches.
For over 20 years, the club has delivered on its mission to thousands of young girls and boys who truly did learn many important life skills and I believe are stronger and more confident as a result of their time in our programs. For many of our athletes participation in our club has generated thousands of dollars of scholarships, financial aid and importantly, helped them gain admittance into stronger academic institutions as they go on to play in college. But by far, the most important thing we have accomplished is giving our athletes the sense of achievement, pride and self-esteem as they move through and beyond high school regardless of the direction and length of their competitive volleyball career.
The “800-pound elephant” on the court has always been when we have several teams at one age group there is the inevitable issue of team selection and hierarchy. Let me be very clear on this point: Regardless of team placement everyone will compete in the same league and through the series of tournaments have equal opportunity to place as high they can in the SCVA rankings. Several years ago, we had a 2s team outperform all season long and eventually overtake in the standings and then beat in tournament play the 1s. Talk about a life lesson for all involved!
Placement on any team is a painstaking endeavor that needs to balance current skill levels with positional needs and realities. Of course, it is an inexact process and thus guaranteed to produce some tears and angst somewhere in a group of 60 plus athletes. Placement on a perceived lower team (at this brief moment in your athlete’s career) needs to be seen as part of a process. Hopefully the team placement creates the best possible platform for your athlete to maximize growth and development. If there is a feeling of being placed on a "lesser team" the life skill begging to be nurtured is to go prove “them” all wrong at both an individual level and for the team to set a goal to finish higher in the standings. On the other side of the coin is gaining knowledge one doesn't own one’s position on a team from age 12 on.... things change and one needs to constantly work to be the best one can be.
I can assure you of the following. The coaching group slotted for these teams is the best around regardless of team placement and clear-eyed thought and care will go into making the best possible decision for the LONG RUN development of your athlete.
I wish all families the best of luck in the upcoming tryouts, and have faith in our coaching staff and leadership that, while the process may be difficult, we will come out of tryouts with many strong, motivated teams with tons of potential to continue to grow and develop!
SBVC Board President