It's June, which in Texas typically means that football is right around the corner. At CPYFA we're well into the planning stages for our upcoming season and for those of you who are wondering, yes, we're still planning to have a fall football and cheer season. Last month I shared that our fall registration numbers are well below their typical level for this time of year and asked parents to respond to a survey to offer insights into what considerations might be driving our underperformance. Thank you to all who took the time to respond to that survey, your responses were helpful and insightful.
I would summarize the responses we received in the survey to two general themes. The parents we heard from are concerned about the health and safety of their child(ren) and are equally concerned about what happens with their registration fees if the season gets canceled.
Starting with the latter concern, let me state unequivocally our goal that no parent experiences a financial loss in the event that our fall season is canceled. We faced this very challenge with our spring season and were able to fully refund or defer registration fees to each parent, the same will be true for the fall season with a few notable tweaks.
Our experiences in the spring demonstrated that the level to which we customize our jerseys impacts the costs we incur if the season gets canceled. We believe that one reason parents decide to register their children with CPYFA is because of the community we foster and the ties we develop between our youngest athletes and the high school. We want our young football players and cheer leaders to feel the pride of association with our CPHS Varsity Programs, that means - among many other factors - uniforms customized to look like the uniforms our high school athletes wear. That customization, however, means that if a season gets canceled those uniforms cannot be reused in the following season. As an organization, CPYFA typically orders between 185 to more than 200 individual uniforms per season. Needless to say, uniforms are among the single largest line-item in our budget.
For the upcoming fall season the board and I are actively discussing ways to mitigate this risk to a significant part of our budget and to a notable portion of your registration fees. One example may be waiting to print or embroider names on the back of football jerseys until the very last minute, or simply omitting names from the back of jerseys altogether. While I personally know the pride of seeing the family name on the back of my boys' uniforms, the decision not to print names on the jerseys would allow us to reuse the uniforms in a subsequent season if necessary. That in turn would allow us to fully refund fall football registration fees. Cheer uniforms may well be different and though I can't promise we'll be able to fully refund the cost of those uniforms, I can promise the Board and I are actively discussing our options with a sensitivity to the financial considerations of all parents in this time of economic turmoil and uncertainty.
"Whether that means additional uniform pieces or spirit wear, end of season banquets funded by CPYFA, better trophies and celebrations for our championship teams, or the opportunity to attend regional tournaments at less cost out of pocket, we will do more for each of your kids this season."
In the past few weeks I have personally fielded questions and heard concerns from multiple parents about the cost of registration for our programs. It's clear to me that parents and coaches are increasingly asking "what am I getting for the money I'm spending?" These are questions that should be asked and every parent, sponsor and donor has a right to know how their money is being invested back into this program. I cannot account for the investments of the past, but I can assure each parent that this Board and I work tirelessly to ensure that we are optimizing every dollar and investing every cent into these kids. To that end and in the spirit of transparency, we have created a new page on our website dedicated to helping explain Where The Money Goes. This webpage will not answer every question but I hope it will offer a glimpse into the work and money that goes into making every season a success. My commitment to every parent reading this note is that I will work tirelessly to ensure we are investing every dollar that comes into this organization back into the kids. Whether that means additional uniform pieces or spirit wear, end of season banquets funded by CPYFA, better trophies and celebrations for our championship teams, or the opportunity to attend regional tournaments at less cost out of pocket, we will do more for each of your kids this season.
I would of course be remiss if I did not spend some time providing an update on what CPYFA is doing to prepare for COVID19 in the upcoming season. We're monitoring guidance from federal, state and local health officials and are in close communication with LISD about district and UIL requirements. We've created a new page on our website dedicated to our response to COVID19 and the provisions we're making for the fall season. This page will be updated periodically as the season approaches and throughout the season as new health and safety guidance becomes available.
As I close this note I want to take the opportunity to thank each parent for their patience and courage as we traverse this pandemic and endeavor to make our organization stronger. We want to hear from you! Leave us comments on this article, send us a note, message us on Facebook or track down a board member and them know what's on your mind. We're all in this together.
Looking forward to a great fall season!