POLICY CHANGE ADOPTED BY BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Arlington Soccer Board of Directors voted at its February 27th meeting to accept the recommendation of the Recreational (Rec) Program Committee to no longer permit travel players to play on rec teams at the 5th grade age group and higher beginning with the Fall 2019 season. The decision came after months of careful consideration and deliberation by the Board, the Rec Committee, and with input and approval from both the Travel Program Committee and the Joint Program Committee (representing both travel and rec programs). All of these entities are made up of Arlington Soccer parents who volunteer their time and who had the opportunity to discuss this recommendation thoroughly and thoughtfully before voting. Arlington Soccer’s professional staff also provided input and supported the recommendation.
The recommendation was made, and ultimately approved, based on the following rationale:
- Rec soccer is a program intended for the development of soccer players without the emphasis on travel or high-level competition. Travel players participating on a rec team have changed team dynamics and can result in unevenly matched games, impacting the experience and development of rec players.
- At the 5th-grade level and above, the difference in play between a travel and rec player is more defined than at early ages.
- Travel players have a rigorous practice and game schedule. Technical staff have observed that adding rec practices and games to a travel player’s schedule can impede performance and increase potential for injury. Travel schedules also cause travel players to miss rec practices and games, which can negatively impact rec teams.
- The change brings Arlington Soccer’s policies closer to conformity with many other local rec programs, that do not allow travel players on rec teams at any age.
We understand that this change may be difficult for some families and we regret any negative impact it may have. A comprehensive FAQ related to this change is posted here. We want to assure you that we are listening and will continue to listen to your feedback on this change. We ask that you send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org so that all viewpoints can be captured and considered.