MHSAA: Allow my son and some disabled students to play for 1 year past the current age limit

    1. Dean Dompierre
    2. Petition by

      Dean Dompierre

      Ishpeming, MI

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August 2012

Victory

After more than 90,000 people signed this petition, the MHSAA changed their age limit rule for student athletes with disabilities.

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.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Check out our website for the latest interviews with the Dompierre family!

      Dean Dompierre
      Petition Organiser

      Find the latest updates and information on our battle with the MHSAA to change the maximum age rule. Read articles and watch video clips of interviews.

    2. Ishpeming High School Proposes Age Waiver for Disabled Students

      Michael Jones
      Senior Campaign Director

      Check out the website of Ishpeming High School, where you can find information on a proposal submitted by the school to allow waivers to the current age restriction regulation that would enable certain students with a combination of intellectual and physical disabilities to compete in high school sports for a full four years alongside their classmates.

    3. Reached 75,000 signatures
    4. Ishpeming Man Challenges Michigan High School Athletic Association

      Michael Jones
      Senior Campaign Director

      A radio interview featuring Dean Dompierre, who started a petition on Change.org to urge the Michigan High School Athletic Association to adjust their rules so that student athletes with disabilities can play a full four years of high school sports.

    5. Reached 50,000 signatures
    6. Local activist challenges MHSAA rule

      Michael Jones
      Senior Campaign Director

      Check out this story from The Oakland Press, covering the efforts of Dean Dompierre to make sure his son can play high school sports during his senior year.

    7. Reached 9,000 signatures
    8. Teen with Down Syndrome will miss out on senior season because of age

      Michael Jones
      Senior Campaign Director

      Yahoo! Sports covers the efforts of Dean Dompierre to change a rule in Michigan that could prevent his son -- and many other student athletes with physical or intellectual disabilities -- from playing a full four years of high school sports.

    9. Reached 6,000 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Cindy Farrow LEBANON, CT
      • almost 2 years ago

      Because I also have children who have intellectual challenges and play sports and do not feel they should be penalized.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Rashawn Fields FEDERAL WAY, WA
      • almost 2 years ago

      because everyone should get equal oppurtunitys

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Kathleen Sannicks-Lerner HUNTINGDON VALLEY, PA
      • almost 2 years ago

      This will hurt no one, and benefit many.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Jacqui Thomas LAFAYETTE, IN
      • almost 2 years ago

      He is still a teenager! The schools have delayed girls getting to school before they are 6 because it would hurt the pride of the boys. If children were allowed to start earlier as they once were then this would not be an issue. I am not sure why 18 is the age limit but many people have trouble in school so if the reason is for intellectual disabilities then since they are not kicked out at 18 they should be allowed to play.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Cathy ellorin BONITA, CA
      • almost 2 years ago

      I have a disabled daughter!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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