Eric Dompierre , a 19 year old junior with Down syndrome who attends Ishpeming High School, will be ineligible to compete in football and basketball his senior year because of age restrictions set in place by the Michigan High School Athletic Association.
This rule is the only rule that the MHSAA does not allow itself to waive. Changing this rule will enable a small number of deserving students who have experienced a hardship due to a combination of intellectual and physical disabilities early in life to play a full four years of high school sports. This would put Michigan in line with 23 other states who currently allow waivers to their maximum age rule.
Embarrassing these students by unnecessarily sitting them in the stands benefits no one. It shouldn't require a large number of people demanding that they do the right thing, but that may be what it takes. Please sign this petition and show your support for Eric and other student athletes like him.
If you live in Michigan, please also contact your local school board and urge them to support this petition and the proposal to allow waivers to the age limit so that Michigan joins 23 other states in allowing certain athletes with both intellectual and physical disabilities to play a full four years of high school sports. You can view this proposal and the rationale behind it at IshpemingSchools.com.