Beginning this week, competitive junior high after-school sports leagues organized by the Santa Barbara Police Activities League (SBPAL) will start having games at four middle school campuses in Santa Barbara and Goleta. The SBPAL After-School Sports Program is a collaborative effort between SBPAL, the cities of Santa Barbara and Goleta and the Santa Barbara Unified School District to provide after-school sports opportunities to youth in the community who would otherwise be unable to participate in competitive sports.
The participating schools are Goleta Valley Junior High, La Colina Junior High, La Cumbre Junior High and Santa Barbara Junior High. This season begins with boys basketball and girls soccer and will end with a daylong tournament in December to see which school can grasp first place. All practices and games are held on campus and SBPAL provides transportation for the teams to and from games.
In addition to having the desire to play, the criterion for participation in the After-School Sports Program includes personal accountability of each student to complete their homework, to be a good citizen, and to maintain a satisfactory grade-point average. Participation also requires that the student attend school on the day of a practice or a game.
One aspect that makes the SBPAL After-School Sports Program unique is that it gives kids the chance to play competitive sports without the high cost of club fees. This program is free to students at Goleta Valley Junior High, La Colina Junior High, La Cumbre Junior High and Santa Barbara Junior High. Everyone can participate! Additional information and registration forms can be obtained at the aforementioned school offices and the Twelve35 Teen Center, 1235 Chapala St., or by calling 805.962.5560.
Although the After-School Sports Program is free for participants, it’s not free to run. SBPAL pays for the coaches, referees and equipment that makes this program a success. Donations are welcome and can be made at the SBPAL website.
Click here for more information on the Santa Barbara Police Activities League, or call 805.962.5560. Click here to make an online donation to the SBPAL through givezooks! Connect with the Santa Barbara Police Activities League on Facebook.
— Laurie Parker is executive director of the Santa Barbara Police Activities League.