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UPDATE: State Declares Cheerleading an Official Sport

Board of Regents settles the "Is cheerleading a sport?" debate Tuesday.

Update: Tuesday 3 p.m.- The Board of Regents voted unanimously Tuesday to recognize cheerleading as a sport, according to the New York State Public High School Athletic Association. 

Original story:

The New York State Board of Regents is set to vote Tuesday to make cheerleading an official interscholastic sport. 

An 11-member Regents committee voted unanimously on Monday to recommend putting cheerleading on par with football, baseball, soccer and every other high school sport, according to a Wall Street Journal report. 

The board is expected to give final approval to the measure–which would take effect next winter season–as the 11 committee members make up most of the full 17-member board, the reports says. 

Robert Zayas, the executive director of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA), said a favorable vote Tuesday would "finally allow our association to implement coaching and safety standards for cheer coaches as well as highlight and promote the incredible athletes who participate in the sport with a championship event.”

New York would join 34 other states and the District of Columbia in recognizing cheerleading as a sport. 

Do you support cheerleading becoming an official interscholastic sport? Share your thoughts in the comments section below. 
Kerri Smithers April 29, 2014 at 08:27 PM
As the mother of a cheer leader I was also a coach for a youth league and I attended yearly safety clinics and worked with experienced coaches on improving safety and techniques. My teams safety was always extremely important to everyone in the organization. This is not a topic about education. That is a separate duscussion. If you have a problem with the education your child is receiving please take that to your BOE. This ruling is about cheerleading being recognizing as a sport that takes tremendous physical work. It is about being treated the same as other sports. It is about certified coaches and rules. It is also about receiving the same benefits that all other sports receive, such as equal time in training facilities. I would also like to make the person who commented before me aware that this new ruling is for Competition cheerleading. There are many cheerleading competitions throughout New York State and nationally in the youth, middle school and high school divisions. As well as all-star gym competitions. There are winners, divisions and conferences. Please Google UCA and NCA. I hope that answers your questions..
Maria April 29, 2014 at 10:49 PM
The ruling affects competitive cheerleading not sideline cheering. The purpose is to attempt to decrease the amount of catastrophic injuries by regulating coach certifications, setting season limits and requiring limits on practice time and such.
Diane Todd April 29, 2014 at 11:23 PM
OMG!! Cheer is “officially” on its way to becoming a “Sport”, at least in New York!!! New York, you rule! Hey, NFL- How about paying NFL Cheerleader’s a living wage! Better yet, treat them like the athletes they were meant to be by introducing cheer competitions into NFL Cheer! CALLING all NFL Fans & Cheerleading Fans & Athletes everywhere - Please show your support by signing & distributing my petition to pay NFL Cheerleaders a livable wage: www.change.org/NFLCheerleaders, and together, we can make a difference! Benefits of introducing Cheer Competitions into the NFL: NFL will generate additional revenue by adding cheer competitions during half time (10-minutes out of the half-time schedule), with “NFL Cheer Play-Offs” & “NFL Cheer Bowl” at the conclusion of the NFL Super Bowl. Cheerleading has a HUGE following- the stands will be filled (have you attended a National Cheerleading event lately?), not to mention all of the additional cheer merchandise! NFL Cheerleaders will finally receive the respect and pay they so deserve! Heck NFL, they might even stop suing you! Maybe the NFL also hires MEN on ALL cheerleading squads (it’s called “diversity”), as cheerleading isn’t just for women & girls! As the saying goes “Weights are for Wimps, Cheerleaders Pick up People”! And finally, the Public will benefit by the additional jobs created (e.g. cheer judges, etc), more safety & money will be interjected into the Cheer Community (pay NFL Cheerleaders an athlete’s salary & watch the money flow) and NFL Cheerleaders will once again be shown on t.v. (ever wonder why they seldom televise NFL Cheerleaders?), not to mention the great entertainment value competition cheerleading brings (have you seen the “Infinite Champions League Cheerleading Event” that was televised in movie theaters around the country on April 10th- they are AMAZING athletes to watch!). Cheers, Diane Todd (“Cheerleader for the Cheerleaders”)
Christopher Wendt April 30, 2014 at 11:24 AM
This is long overdue. Think about this, though. It has taken until 2014 to get this on the Regents Docket, and it is still awaiting final action by the full Board of Regents, which will then kick-off the processes with SED and the Athletic Associations and Regional Sections for promulgating regulations and rule-making, establishing schedules, events, tournaments, and championship standards, procedures and awards. But at least things are moving forward, here...in 2014 on into 2015. Unless the Regents change their collective mindset.
Tami Hernandez May 02, 2014 at 11:19 AM
Absolutely long over due!! Now our girls will hopefully get the respect and recognition they deserve! Deer Park Competition Cheer has always been an advocate for helping ppl become aware of the hard work and dedication our girls have. They practice, work out and play just as much and just as hard as soccer players, LaCross Players etc. Check us out www.leaguelineup.com/falc

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