The team can go to the competition without their errant team member, though I would recommend letting him/her attend at this late stage of the game. While the kids are at team meetings their behavior is on them, but getting them to practices is on the parents and I would hate to see a child penalized for their parents' lack of commitment (though there certainly may be a correlation between the parents' lack of commitment and this team member's engagement while at practice). There may also be something happening in this family that is appropriately taking precedence over FLL and that they are keeping private.
All that being said, it is entirely reasonable to expect full participation from all team members. If I was in your shoes I would chalk it up as a learning experience both for myself and for the kids. I have found that some of my greatest learning experiences as a coach have been as a result of dealing with difficult team members/situations and - while it can be very frustrating for everyone involved - it is a good learning experience for the kids as well as they will certainly run into situations like this throughout their lives. I would then start out the next season by setting forth a clear set of team expectations/responsibilities - including participation - with a clear set of consequences for not fulfilling those expectations that both parents and team members sign. This would help take the emotional element out and you can have conversations with the team member and their parents as issues arise to remind them of the consequences of not showing up for team meetings.
Good luck tomorrow!
On Nov 15, 2013, at 3:49 PM, Stefani Griffin wrote:
> Hello everyone! I have a last-minute conundrum that has come up. We
> have a mandatory practice today for the team and one member (who has
> chosen to miss over half of our practices) has once again not come. I
> feel like it isn't fair for the team to do all the hard work and one
> student gets to "ride the coat-tails". In your personal opinion(s),
> should we chalk it up to a learning experience and just let them come to
> competition? Should we (and can we) just go to competition without
> them? Any advice is appreciated!
> ~Stefani Griffin
> -- To UNSUBSCRIBE or CHANGE your settings, please visit https://listserv.jmu.edu/archives/vadcfll-l.html and select "Join or leave the list".
> -- VADCFLL administrative announcements are sent via VADCFLL-ANNOUNCEMENTS-L. Visit https://listserv.jmu.edu/archives/vadcfll-ANNOUNCEMENTS-l.html to subscribe.
-- To UNSUBSCRIBE or CHANGE your settings, please visit https://listserv.jmu.edu/archives/vadcfll-l.html and select "Join or leave the list".
-- VADCFLL administrative announcements are sent via VADCFLL-ANNOUNCEMENTS-L. Visit https://listserv.jmu.edu/archives/vadcfll-ANNOUNCEMENTS-l.html to subscribe.