High School in New Jersey Allows Anyone to Be a Cheerleader, Causes Controversy

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  • Breaking news — anyone can join the cheerleading team (even if you really suck at it).

    Hanover Park High School in New Jersey has made a new policy allowing anyone and everyone who auditions for the cheerleading team to be admitted. The decision was made after a parent of a student complained because their child did not make the higher level team (varsity, we would assume) and was placed on the lower level team. The rule applies specifically to anyone in 11th and 12th grade, and automatically places them on the higher level team.

    The school decided to launch an investigation about the tryout process to figure out if there was anything shady going on. Conclusion of the investigation? The school “discovered… an irregularity… which called into question the validity of the results.” So, long story short — anyone can make the team now. To some people, this may appear to be a positive thing — anyone can join, how accepting! But, there’s more to the story.

    Cheerleading is a sport that requires a lot of training, especially at this school where the higher level team competes. So, it makes sense that they would want to be selective in their audition process. Obviously, people are pissed off — especially current cheerleaders and parents.

    10 cheerleaders spoke to the board of education, and one of them said this: “I came up here to state that I did not put in 18 months of work to lead up to this moment, just to be told it didn’t matter anymore.” Another one of the students said: “All the time I’ve spent in my cheer gym practicing, constantly flipping, practicing my jumps, all was just like gone. I can’t believe, like, my hard work just dropped. It’s like telling a football player — your star varsity football player — they can’t play anymore because we want to make it all inclusive.”

    Many of the parents speaking out are essentially saying, “this doesn’t happen in the real world.” And the coach of the team said: “These kids are muscular. They’re strong. They’re fast. It’s not good for the image of cheerleading in general because you’re talking about a sport that already has to fight to be recognized.”

    So what do you guys think about this new policy? Do you think everyone should be allowed to join any sport they desire? Let me know in the comments below.

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