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Greater Cleveland Football Association

Greater Cleveland Football Association

News Detail


Jan, 2023

Who's Coaching Your Child?

As parents we all want to give our kids the best possible childhood and for a lot of us, that includes playing youth sports. Most of us sign our kids up for youth sports without thinking twice about the vetting process of the coaches teaching our kids. We assume that the organization has done the due diligence on background checks for the coaches leading our kids. Unfortunately not all youth sports leagues treat this issue as seriously as it should be.

East Wake Football League takes this issue very seriously, that is why they require every organization to use the “Gold Standard of Best Practices for Background Screening and Managing Risk In Non-Profit Youth-Serving Organizations (” when screening their coaches and administrators. Every coach and administrator is required to complete this screening before they are allowed to participate in program activities.  The National Council of Youth Sports denies any applicant if they have been convicted of any felony or any violent crime whether a misdemeanor or felony.

The Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) also stipulates that any person “that has been convicted of a felony, has pending felony charges, or has a substantial criminal background without a felony” may not participate as a coach or other influential adult in the program. There is a stipulation, however, that allows this person to apply directly with AAU’s home office to be reviewed and perhaps be accepted.

Pop Warner, the largest youth football league in the nation, requires organizations to deny an individual from coaching or volunteering if they are a registered sex offender or have been convicted of any crime involving a child. If an applicant comes back with any other felony or misdemeanor violent crime conviction then it is left up to the individual organization whether or not that coach or volunteer can be involved with your child.

Potentially, with the options above, an individual could have been convicted of a violent assault, have alcohol or drug related conviction, and the organization could still choose to allow them to coach your child. Ask these tough questions to the league commissioner that you want your kids to play for.

You can have peace of mind knowing that Greater Cleveland Football Association only approves volunteers that have NO felony convictions or any type of violent crime conviction, whether felony or misdemeanor. High Schools and Middle Schools require this from their coaches, why shouldn’t we require the same from our youth coaches, who are coaching the most vulnerable?

Man Facing Drug Charges Allowed to Coach

Youth Football League Did Not Run Background Check


Panthers Youth Football
351 S Parliament way 
Clayton, North Carolina 27520

Phone: 919-825-0872
Email: [email protected]

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