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The perceptions about youth sports programs in Nebraskan communities

Dan J Schnoes, University of Nebraska - Lincoln


The purpose of this study was to examine the availability of youth sports programs in Nebraska and perceptions about those programs. Nine-hundred-seventeen Perceptions about Youth Sports Programs surveys were mailed to parents, community officials, and athletic directors in 50 randomly selected Class C1 and C2 school districts in Nebraska. Athletic directors from an additional 58 Class C schools in Nebraska were included in the survey study. Completed surveys were returned by 445 individuals for a return rate of 48.5%. The results revealed youth sports programs were offered in 100% of the communities included in the study. Ninety-six percent of parents reported their children have participated in youth sports. Parents most often reported supporting youth sports programs by paying fees and providing transportation. Community officials and athletic directors reported most often committing use of facilities along with the maintenance and custodial care of facilities to youth sports programs. The top five ranked benefits of participation in youth sports programs by parents were: learning sportsmanship, learning team work, physical fitness, skill development, and enhancing self esteem. The top detriment for participation in youth sports rated by all groups was identified as focusing on winning only. Parents do not consider the availability of youth sports programs and/or successful high school athletic programs in choosing where to live and deciding where to send their children to school. Community officials and athletic directors reported youth sports programs and the success of high school athletics are factors they consider important to drawing families to the community and school district. Finally, 69% of the athletic directors agreed that youth sports enhanced participation levels and team success at the high school level. ^

Subject Area

Education, Administration|Education, Secondary

Recommended Citation

Schnoes, Dan J, "The perceptions about youth sports programs in Nebraskan communities" (2008). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3297944.