The Acorn League interschool sports program for seventh and eighth graders will again be under the umbrella of the Manteca Unified School District starting next fall.
That means teachers that are hired to coach Acorn teams will be eligible for a $2,032 stipend per season. The additional pay — just like that for other assignments such as summer school and coaching high school sports teams and other extracurricular assignments involving stipends — will not spike a teacher’s retirement benefits that are based on their base salaries.
Currently the sports program is fee-based and is operated by the non-profit Manteca Unified Student Trust. The Acorn League for years was operated by the school district until 2006 when budget cutbacks from the Great Recession hit schools.
The community-based group with a board heavily laden with school personnel made sure that the league play continued.
The Manteca Unified board decision Tuesday night means $300,000 will be added into the 2016-17 budget for the Acorn League.
Some of the previous sports such as baseball and softball won’t be offered due to the widespread availability of such options for youth in the community. New sports may be added.
The committee the school board appointed to look into whether to bring Acorn League back under district control noted the current arrangement was keeping some students from participating due to the fees.
The committee also noted the old Acorn League was important to schools as it provided opportunities for students who were not connected to school as well as motivation for students to do well in school.