There's a School Referee Shortage and Parents are to blame

posted by iHeartMedia's Scott Crowder -

Now that summer is here, Texas schools are preparing for the fall sports schedule. But there's a problem, a shortage of referees. Refs are quitting because of abusive parents and even coaches. A San Antonio high school football coach -- who ordered players to hit a ref during a game -- pleaded guilty to assault and saw an end to his coaching and teaching career.

Family therapist Lori Vann says she has an idea for the parents who need a little education.

"When they sign their child up for the sporting event, when they register them, then the parents have to complete a mandatory sportsmanship class."

But Vann says you shouldn't engage the craziest parents -- let police handle it.

"If someone looks like they have already really crossed that line and they are in such an aggressive state then it really may be a consideration to just go ahead and call police."

Vann says some parents also attack referees after the game on social media.

"You can always report them and we're encouraging parents or anyone who sees such cyberbullying going on to report it to that social media site and if it continues then you're looking at harassment charges."

Vann says many of these abuse issues may wind up in the courts. The National Federation of State High School Associations says 80% of high school officials quit before their third year.

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