The Norman Transcript

February 22, 2013

Health, safety are main concerns

The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Q: I’m pretty sure I overheard my daughter talking to a friend about spending the night because the parents were going to provide alcohol. She is only in eighth grade. Please tell me parents aren’t actually doing this, and if they are, what should I do?

— Dennis, Del City

Dear Dennis,

We would love to be able to tell you that this isn’t going on, but we can’t. It is disturbing to find out not only parents are doing this but how many are doing it.

Many schools offer a safe home pact that parents can voluntarily sign at the beginning of the year saying they won’t provide alcohol or drugs for anyone underage. Unfortunately, some parents believe “they’re going to do it anyway — I’d rather them do it at my house.”

We are not here to judge what parents choose to do with their own children. However, if alcohol and/or drugs are being provided to others, it is a serious offense and punishable by law.

What to do? That’s the hard part. Impressing upon your daughter why it’s wrong, dangerous and unlawful would be our first suggestion. You could always insist the kids come to your house to spend the night.

Don’t be afraid to approach the other parent, tell them what you’ve heard and insist that your child not be a part of this. Your daughter may not be happy with you but, once again, her health and safety are your main concerns.

Q: My son is interested in playing sports at the college level. We have heard several other parents talking about registering with the NCAA and know nothing about it. Do you happen to know what we should do?

— Larry, Moore

Dear Larry,

As a matter of fact, we do know about this. Any athletes, male or female, need to register with the NCAA Clearinghouse if they want to continue in sports in college. This is true for any level, Division 1, Division 2, etc. Your son’s coach should’ve already been talking to you or your son about this if they knew his intent.

There are a total of 32 semesters of core courses required during the high school years. The obvious ones are English, science, math and history. To make up the balance, students can take foreign language, psychology, sociology, and intro to law, for example. Computer, music, drama or other business classes won’t count toward the 32 semesters for the NCAA.

For a complete listing, you can look on the NCAA website (, but your son’s coach and counselor should also have this information.

Please encourage your son to keep his grades up. This is really important because the NCAA operates on a sliding scale for scores. What this means is the higher the GPA, the lower the ACT score can be and vice versa.

You didn’t say what grade your son is in, but even if he’s only a ninth-grader, it’s time to ensure the correct classes are being taken. However, any course taken for high school credit plays into this equation.

Sally and Jeannie are certified school counselors with 49 years combined educational experience. Jeannie has two children, Sally three. The responses presented don’t necessarily reflect the views of any certain school district. Please send your questions to Counselor Connection C/O the Norman Transcript P.O. Drawer 1058 Norman, Oklahoma 73070 or email questions to

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