Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Dear Bill Reader, Bert Borgmann, Chuck Howell, Administrators of CHSAA,

It has come to our attention that a request made last November by the Herzl/Rocky Mountain Hebrew Academy men's basketball team to reschedule the regional finals game was recently denied by the board of the Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA). The team had asked to be accommodated should they advance to the regional finals, as the championship game conflicts with the team's observation of the Jewish Sabbath. By now you are very much aware of the dilemma you have wrought on these students, who face the possibility of forfeiting the last game of their season because of their devotion to their faith.

The CHSAA mission statement states that “CHSAA will provide diverse and equitable opportunities for participation that encourages all qualified students to take part in the activity/athletic experience.” The athletes of Herzl/RMHA have been provided with neither a diverse nor equitable opportunity to participate in a full basketball season, because their faith would prohibit them from participating in the regional finals game. We are asking that CHSAA show respect for the diversity of their member schools and adhere to their mission.

This situation is not only unfair to the athletes of Herzl/RMHA who have worked so hard both on and off the court to get where they are, it is unfair to their opponents who may very well see the culmination of their season end in a victory by default. This possibility sullies the idea that CHSAA provides, “… an environment that enhances personal development through sporting behavior, character education, teamwork, leadership, and citizenship while increasing values that partner the educational standards of the State of Colorado.” We ask that CHSAA reconsider their decision and do what is right for these athletes.