Getting to Know your Little League Coach: Using Background Checks to Ensure your Child’s Safety.

Getting to Know your Little League Coach: Using Background Checks to Ensure your Child’s Safety.

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Little league coaches come from all walks of life. These coaches are often retirees, volunteers, college students, and parents as well as both men and women. Besides their appearance and what your child tells you, how much do you really know about these coaches? Sure, they may look friendly and they are giving back to the community by volunteering their time. However, how much do you trust a stranger with your child? Little league coaches spend approximately nine hours a week with their teams and even more time during travel to away games. In addition, many children look up to these coaches as role models. Wouldn’t you want to know a little more about someone who will have such a large impact on your child’s life?

Identity Guard

Growing up in a rural community, one of the most exciting times of the year for me was little league season. Each year, I couldn’t wait to get introduced to my new teammates and my new coach. It really was great to start the new season, but to tell you the truth, it was a little weird interacting with my new coach. Having someone that you don’t know tell you what to do and spend that much time with you so quickly can be an unnerving situation.

I remember a coach that I had named Mark. He was an extremely nice gentleman and really kept the team having fun. After the game each Saturday, he would invite the team over for a pool party. I never went with him because I usually went out to eat with my parents. Anyway, one week I heard a story about how he made a pass at one of my team mates. I told my dad and he then told the police. It turns out that Coach Mark was a convicted sex offender, a fact that none of the parents were aware of. Coach Mark was then arrested and was removed as our coach. I wonder though, could this incident have been prevented if one of the parents had checked up on Mark before the season?

The old adage that it is “better to be safe than sorry” is not a bad one to practice with your children. Online background checks are a relatively inexpensive way to keep your child protected by having them spend time with only truly trustworthy and responsible individuals. In the case of Coach Mark, if a parent had run a background check prior to the season, he would have never been our coach. In addition, the league may have amended their coach selection policy to include background checks of candidates to eliminate candidates like Mark.

The staff at PSN urges parents to run a background check on your children’s coaches before each season. You don’t need much information to run a check and the basic information on a coach provided by your little league, such as phone number, first and last name, etc., should be sufficient. Background checks performed by reputable organizations will show your coach’s past and help you decide if he or she is the right person to coach your child. In addition to telling you if your coach has a criminal record, background checks can also tell you if a coach has moved around often, has aliases, marital status, and whether they have been labeled as a sex offender. In addition, background checks can be performed for about the cost of a large pizza. Thus, piece of mind this season can be obtained for as little as $9.95 through an online search service like Isn’t your child worth it?

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