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A new way for EPA kids to get their kicks

Original post made on Sep 6, 2007

If it wasn't for a new low-cost soccer program in East Palo Alto, many of the 400 kids who played their first games Saturday at Cesar Chavez Elementary School would have been zoning-out in front of the tube.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, September 20, 2006, 12:00 AM

Comments (8)

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Posted by Don Res
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Sep 6, 2007 at 9:01 am

Is there specific information available on how to make a small donation to Ravenswood Youth Athletic Association? DR

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Crescent Park
on Sep 6, 2007 at 9:13 am

Most people work. Most parents who volunteer for the local AYSO in Palo Alto work full time and long hours. Parents who want to provide a soccer outlet for their kids volunteer after they finish their work day. The fact that there are not enough parents in EPA willing to volunteer some of their free time is the problem. They need to address that issue as a community. Throwing money at the problem is not the answer.

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Posted by referee
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Sep 6, 2007 at 10:50 am

In other AYSO leagues, mothers and other women can coach and referee. East Palo Alto might double its volunteer pool if it didn't just rely on fathers and uncles.

Does anyone else think that $200/player for a soccer season is awfully high?

I agree with Resident: families need to step up and support their kids, in academics as well as in sports. The rest of us work too, and somehow we manage to stay involved in our kids' lives.

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Posted by Parent
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Sep 6, 2007 at 11:15 am

Whereas I agree that mothers and other women could and should participate in their kids sports, I think it is worth making this comment.

Boys in particular need men in their lives as role models. This is particularly true in an area like EPA where many boys grow up with their fathers being more remote than perhaps here in PA. These boys need to see men doing ordinary things to help them, being teachers, being coaches, being uncles (biologically or not) and most importantly being mentors. These boys are growing up surrounded by caring women, mothers, grandmothers, aunts, but many of them are in homes where the father is not present or known, or perhaps even not there due to crime related issues.

Any group of men that is willing to go to EPA and work with boys are doing a service to the whole of the community. The women will have some of the pressure taken off them, the boys will have role models and the rest of us will be safer knowing that the male youth is getting a program where they can exert their maleness in a safe environment which makes the community safer.

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Posted by Robert
a resident of Downtown North
on Sep 6, 2007 at 1:27 pm

Well, most of us have normal jobs with normal schedules. The parents in east palo alto area are coming in after you leave your work to clean your office, or serve or cook a meal at a restaurant. They even have to work the weekend. Their work schedules may not be as accommodating as most of ours. (something to think about)

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Posted by yet another parent
a resident of Escondido School
on Sep 6, 2007 at 2:03 pm

"The rest of us work too, and somehow we manage to stay involved in our kids' lives."
The "rest of us" rely on each other for support. We rely on the families in our community who have an extra parent available. Our kids are in AYSO teams or Scout troops or ___insert your favorite parent-led activity here____ that have a larger pool of parents who don't work full time or whose employers allow them a bit of work schedule freedom.

We might own two or more cars to drive our kids in different directions, while they might own two or one or none. We might have a nanny watch our other kids (or drive our kids to soccer) while some of them ARE the nannies who are driving our kids around. We might regularly swing by a restaurant on the way home from practice because we're too busy to cook.

The list of inequalities goes on. Although I don't go for the argument, "well, we can do it, why can't they", I fully agree that parent involvement plays a critical role in a child's success. If we can solve this problem, I believe the achievement gap will be significantly reduced.

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Posted by Midtown Mom
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 6, 2007 at 2:04 pm

I think it's odd that a one year old article is being posted as though it were news. I thought I clearly remembered reading this last year, and indeed, the date is September 20, 2006 - not 2007.

But more power to them - they are in their second year of youth soccer.

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Posted by Lyda
a resident of Menlo Park
on Oct 10, 2007 at 4:47 pm

I live in East Menlo Park and I have a normal work schedule and a normal job and it is not claening the office or being the nanny. My kids have been in the Tinsley program and going to school in Palo Alto. I want the best for my kids. It is not that I do not want to be involved. I don't have the resources to be a volunteer and still be a parent to my other children. I work the day shift and my husband swing. It is all on me when I get off so it makes it difficult to be in 2 or 3 places at the same time.

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