News 12's Most-Viewed: #3 - New policy for cheerleading team angers girls who made the squad

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EAST HANOVER -

News 12 Digital is highlighting the most-viewed stories of 2018 as part of our 'News 12's Most-Viewed' series. This story on a new policy for a cheerleading squad was first published on May 2. Original story below.

A group of high school cheerleaders addressed officials at a board of education meeting in East Hanover Wednesday evening about their disappointment over a new policy for the team.

After cheerleading tryouts at Hanover Park High School in East Hanover were held April 13, some cuts were made. 

But when a parent complained about their child not being allowed on the team, the athletic director changed the policy to allow anyone who wants to be on the team to join. But this new policy is not sitting well with some cheerleaders.

The administration says that the change came due to an “irregularity in the selection process.”

The parents tell News 12 New Jersey that they sent letters to the principal and athletic director complaining about the policy. They say that the principal then threatened to disband the squad all together.

So 10 members of the squad, backed by their parents, came to ask the board to reverse the policy so that team members are forced to earn their spot through hard work and tryouts.

“I came up here to state that I did not put in 18 months of work to lead up to this moment, just to be told it didn’t matter anymore,” says sophomore Jada Alcontara.

“I tried my hardest. Now everything is going away because of one child who did not make the team. And their parent complained so now all my hard work has been thrown out the window,” student Stephan Krueger says.

The school board says in a statement, “In order to facilitate a more inclusive program, the alignment between the various cheerleading squads would be modified to allow all interested students to be able to participate. This decision was made in the best interest of all students and was made to be as inclusive as possible.”

The board president says that they will discuss the matter and make a decision at a later date.

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