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Letter to Mason students cut from volleyball squad causes controversy

A district spokesperson said the letter doesn’t line up with the school’s values.
Published: Mar. 9, 2022 at 9:55 PM EST
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WARREN COUNTY, Ohio (WXIX) - A letter informing some Mason High School students that they didn’t make the boys volleyball team is causing consternation among some parents.

Students were handed the letter walking out of the Mason High School gym. It reads: “Thank you for trying out for Mason Volleyball but because of your lack of volleyball skills you did not make the team.”

Opinions varied on social media, where the letter went viral Wednesday afternoon. Some defended its directness; others pointed to the indelicacy of a perceived punchline.

A parent of one of the students who received the letter believes it could have been phrased better.

“The wording of the letter was just a little discouraging,” said Tyler Vornberg.

Jo McDermit is the parent of a student who has been cut from other teams at Mason. She didn’t see a problem with the letter.

“I thought it was direct and to the point,” she said. “I mean, if they lack the skills, then they do. [...] I honestly feel that if you don’t make the cut, it was a nice way to put it.”

Vornberg would have liked to see the letter build up the students by encouraging them to keep working—or at the very least give them some things to work on so that they might stand a better chance next year.

Tracey Carson is the public information officer with Mason City Schools.

“This letter doesn’t line up with the way we would want as part of our Comet culture,” she said, referencing the school district’s mascot.

The district says they’ll work with coaches to improve the language in any letters cutting students from teams moving forward.

“We want to make sure that even when we’re delivering that tough news that we’re doing it in a way that kids do learn from and grow from,” Carson said.

The coach who penned the letter will not face punishment, the district says, though Carson added this is an opportunity to review the training district coaches get in their mission to uplift their students.

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