Shifting perspectives: New sports complex rule seeks to create a more family-oriented environment


Kaydence Young

Director Of Transportation David See attends the football game with his son, Caden Peterson, and his friend Oliver Murphy Oct 21.

By Kaydence Young, Reporter

Via the School District Facebook page, Oct. 8, it was announced that a new rule will be put into effect at the Spartan Sports complex: No students from the middle school or elementary schools will be allowed to attend football games without a parent. The rule was put in place after administration and chaperones at the games observed inappropriate actions at the homecoming game, Sept. 26. Middle school students were cited as most of the offenders. Some, but not all acts include running through the walkways, throwing food from the top of the bleachers, bullying other students, and physical aggression.

“The decision was made based on feedback from the supervisors and principals from the middle school and high school staff,” Athletic and Activities Director Ella Olson said. “We all agreed that ‘we really want to do this.’” 

Olson later discussed the proposal with District Administrator Amy Starzecki, where the change was approved. The goal for the new rule is to create a more family-friendly environment, where families can enjoy time spent together without disruptions.

“We want the games to be family-oriented, and be positive images for the visiting schools,” business teacher Donna Stubbe said. “That’s what the Spartans are all about,” 

Although the rule is meant to create a positive environment, many students disagree with it. 

“I don’t agree with the rule because parents are usually busy and have to work,” seventh grade student Beau Lacross said. “It makes it so less people can attend the games.”

Olson addressed this concern, explaining that, although administration worried about lower game attendance, they believe that the environment will be more welcoming to parents and more fun. 

“It’s really great to see the parents get involved. It looked as though they were having fun,” Olson said.

Senior Ash Strong also believes that there should be changes. 

“I believe that the Spartan’s rules at the games will help with the rowdiness of middle schoolers,” Strong said. “I am still happy that they can attend under the rules and support our football team.”

However, Superior students aren’t the only ones targeted by the rule. It was actually surrounding Wisconsin schools that had given administrators the idea. 

According to Eau Claire North’s Athletic Director, Mike Pernstiener, no middle schoolers are allowed in the stadium for football games without a parent or guardian present. The same rule also applies to the Menominee High School stadium.

Although the rule has left many people perturbed, Assistant Principal Bill Punkyo believes the community is doing well following it. 

“The parents are doing a good job. I am grateful for the support of the families and community,” Punkyo said.

Olson said that the rule was not a “100% done-deal”, and that they may look at revisiting it in the future to allow attendance from younger students without parents.