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Wolves Soccer Club of Michigan City

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Jul, 2022

Response to WSC Parent Survey (Spring 2022)

    We have reviewed the responses to our Spring 2022 Parent Survey, and wanted to let you know some of the issues raised and our responses. 

  1. Patriot Park - Parking.  Many parents raised the issue of the difficulty of parking at Patriot Park, particularly when there are baseball or softball tournaments going on. We appreciate that most of those who raised the issue understand that we have little or no control over that. We plan to have ongoing dialogue with the Parks and Recreation District, and will keep you updated. 

  1. Patriot Park - Field Conditions.  We have also had issues with the field conditions at Patriot Park. We will be raising this issue with the Park District and the Park Board. It seems fair to observe that the Park District devotes much more time to the softball and baseball fields than to the soccer fields. In fact, the Park District lined the fields for the old Michigan City Soccer Club, but told us they do not have the manpower to do that for us. That seems inequitable, and we will keep you updated on the status of our talks with the Park District and Park Board. 

  1. Parent Actions at Games.  A few parents reacted to the fact that we’ve asked parents not to coach from the sidelines during games. One even suggested that they were told not to cheer on their kids. We’ve addressed this in a couple of Facebook posts, but we just want to restate what we’re looking for here. When we ask for parents not to coach from the sidelines (i.e., “run,” “pass,” “shoot,” “get back on defense,” “dribble,” etc.), this is based on best practices developed by youth coaches and experts around the world.  Coaching is done at practices, and the games are the kids’ chance to show what they can do. If you have any questions about this, we’d recommend the book “Changing the Game,” by John O’Sullivan. I also posted a video on Facebook by Vince Ganzberg, the Director of Coaching Education for United Soccer Coaches, which shows the importance of letting kids play during games without constant instruction from adults. 

  1. Pictures. Pictures were kind of a mess this year. We tried to do too much in one day. For the fall season, and going forward, we will schedule two separate days for pictures, which should make things move much faster. It will also allow for kids and parents who are unable to make it on one of the two scheduled days to have pictures taken. 

  1. Practice Days and Times.  Some raised the issue of having practices on different days and times in families with more than one child playing. This is a tough issue for us. All of our coaches are volunteers, and have to schedule practices at times that fit into their schedules. There is no way we can think of to make sure that siblings on different teams in different age groups have practices at the same time and same place. When the issue was brought to our attention, we did everything in our power to move kids to teams that worked better for their schedule. If we did not know, however, we could not address this for families. We try to be as accommodating as possible, just remember, if you don’t ask, the answer is already no!

  1. Age Group Issues - U12/U14.  We would love to have separate U12 and U14 age groups, but we just didn’t have enough kids to create at least 4 teams in each age group. We were faced with either combining U12 and U14, or just not providing a soccer opportunity for kids in those age groups. We chose to combine them. This did result in some size differences between the kids. We think the U12 and U14 groups are suffering from low numbers due to the impact of covid and the fact there was no soccer in Michigan City for two years. The numbers at the younger age groups, however, are encouraging.  

  1. Age Group Issues - U6. A couple of issues were raised with respect to the U6 division. Some parents loved the practices and games on the same day in the same place. Some other parents didn’t like that set-up. We are open to having coaches hold separate practices, but that depends on the comfort level of individual coaches. Please keep in mind that U6 coaching, whether just before the game or at a separate practice, looks more like fun games than it does traditional soccer coaching. 

Rules / Coaching. Keeping in mind that the spring season was our first, I thought we did reasonably well helping coaches and making rules clear. However, we clearly still have work to do. We will be holding coaching clinics on July 19 and July 23, and will probably schedule additional dates before the season starts. We will also clearly publish the rules of each division on the website and make sure all coaches and parents are aware of them.


Wolves Soccer Club of Michigan City


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