Scoop: Ghidotti students won’t be able to participate in NU sports, starting with next year’s freshman class

Ghidotti students won’t be able to participate in Nevada Union High School sports starting with next year’s freshman class at the early college high school, according to a memo reviewed by Sierra Foothills Report.

All current Ghidotti students — freshman through seniors — will be able to play NU sports their entire time until they graduate.

The decision was a disappointment to Ghidotti administrators and some parents and students. The school — ranked No. 1 academically in a statewide assessment of student performance — will be exploring other options for its students in coming months. “I believe that athletics are an important aspect of being a well-balanced individual and am dedicated to finding ways to help facilitate sports in our students’ lives,” said Ghidotti Principal Noah Levinson in a memo.

(Students have other options, including a chance to compete with Bay Area teams, not just local ones. Our son is a student athlete at Ghidotti. He plays competitive club volleyball in leagues in Grass Valley and in Sacramento, and the teams compete against others at tournaments in the Bay Area. It is a highly competitive league, and we think it is good exposure to play teams from Silicon Valley, San Francisco and the East Bay. He also is a first-degree black belt, working on his second degree at Gold Country Kuk Sool Won. His instructor, Tony Reyna, is a 6th degree black belt).

This comes amid change in the NU sports program. The school has been “right sized” into Division 3 sports league from Division 1. The Board of Managers of the Sac-Joaquin Section has approved a realignment for 2018-2022 that removes Nevada Union from the Sierra Football League in Division 1, with teams such as Del Oro and Granite Bay high school, and puts it in the Tri-County Conference in Division 3, with teams from Lincoln and Placer high school. It is more focused on the foothills.

The culprit is declining enrollment at NU, stemming from an aging and declining demographic in western Nevada County — a recurring theme on this blog.

The decision is a disappointment to some families at Ghidotti. “Ghidotti and all high school students of the district should be given an opportunity to develop their minds and bodies,” said one parent in an opinion column in The Union this summer as the plan was being debated. “I believe this is the wrong message to send to our student athletes of our high school district.”

For the second year in a row, Ghidotti ranked first in a statewide assessment of student performance. This is a coup for western Nevada County, competing against the likes of top-performing high schools in the Bay Area, Silicon Valley and Southern California.

I asked NU for a response to this decision and will post it when I receive it.

NU football coach Houlihan resigns

Head football coach Dennis Houlihan has resigned his coaching position at Nevada Union High School, according to a memo reviewed by Sierra Foothills Report.

“In his five years at NU, Coach Houlihan was instrumental in developing fine upstanding young men,” NU’s Principal Kelly Rhoden said in a memo. “His commitment to the youth of Nevada County cannot be overstated. We thank him for his service.”

The high school will soon post the opening.

Roy Moore loses, sanity reigns

“That Alabama’s voters chose Doug Jones for the United States Senate is cause for celebration,” according to a New York Times editorial. ” A triumph for decency and common sense in a state that seemed for a time at risk of abandoning both, Mr. Jones’s win narrows the Republicans’ Senate majority and delivers a deeply deserved rebuke to President Trump.

“Alabama’s deep-red politics argued against Mr. Jones’s chances. A former federal prosecutor, Mr. Jones won convictions of two Ku Klux Klan members for the 1963 bombing of Birmingham’s 16th Street Baptist Church that killed four girls, and no Democrat had won a Senate race in two decades. But a report in The Washington Post in which four women accused Mr. Moore of sexually harassing or abusing them as teenagers turned the race into a close contest. Mr. Jones’s victory came thanks to overwhelming support from Alabama’s African-American voters.

“Mr. Jones received support from various luminaries, including Barack Obama, as well as an unexpected assist from Alabama’s senior senator, Richard Shelby, a Republican.

“Mr. Moore’s campaign has been a shame for Alabama, one of the nation’s poorest states, whose need for better-paying jobs, health care, education and infrastructure he almost entirely neglected. He did not abandon the race even as the sex abuse charges multiplied; instead, aided by the political nihilist Steve Bannon, he doubled down, insisting the women were lying, part of a plot by the ‘establishment’ and ‘fake news’ to prevent him from changing Washington.

“Mr. Moore repulsed many Alabamians even before the campaign. He has referred to Native Americans and Asians as ‘reds and yellows,’ called gay people ‘perverts’ and homosexuality ‘an inherent evil,’ and falsely claimed that Shariah law exists in Illinois and Indiana.

“Until Mr. Moore (and Mr. Trump) came along, it was difficult to find many candidates so unfit that credible charges of child molestation could seem only the latest disqualifying feature. Their popularity underscores some Christian conservatives’ seeming determination to apply the law, constitutional or moral, only to their opponents.

“At every pivotal moment, Mr. Moore was aided by party leaders unwilling to take a united, moral stand against him.

“’Roy Moore will always vote with us,’ Mr. Trump tweeted on Election Day. Alabamians said there was more at stake in this race, choosing a candidate whose record was cause for pride, not shame, one who spent his career battling bigotry, not exploiting it.”

The full editorial is here.

Disney-Fox megadeal expected for Thursday

“21st Century Fox and Disney are on a ‘glide path’ for a Thursday deal announcement, sources familiar with the deal said,” as CNBC is reporting.

“Disney became the sole suitor after Comcast dropped its bid for the majority of Fox assets on Monday.

“A week ago, CNBC reported that Disney and the Rupert Murdoch-controlled media company were closing in on a deal. The enterprise value of the Fox assets in the Disney deal is seen as above $60 billion, sources said a week ago, but that exact amount is still not firm.

“Current Fox shareholders would get one share of the company that remains after the movie and television assets are sold, plus shares of Disney in a fixed exchange ratio.

The article is here.