Equestrian team contests response from village about inclusion on signage

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Entrances to the village have a sign listing state championships earned by Clinton High School. A recent issue was made over the addition of a student’s state recognition in equestrian competition. Photo by Mary Kay McPartlin.

During the Clinton Community Schools monthly Board meeting on Dec. 17, the equestrian team stated its recent request for approval of an addition of Quincy Kittle’s state championship to the “green” sign at the entrance of the village was denied by Clinton Village Manager Kevin Cornish. The Board decided that it was inappropriate to advise the village on this matter, although they feel all state championship titles should be acknowledged, whether earned by a varsity team, club or non-school sponsored athletic program.

“I did not deny it,” said Cornish. “I explained to them I have concerns about what they want to do.”

Several board members said they were willing to support the cause in the role as parents and community members. Pray said he would consider creating a Wall of Champions to acknowledge all state titles earned by students in the district.
There have been seven students who’ve earned state individual titles in Clinton varsity track and wrestling who are not recognized on the sign, according to Cornish. He added, “My issues are this, it’s not a school sponsored activity. The problem I have if I do that one, how do I not put others up there.”

When looking at individual state records, size also becomes an issue. There are restrictions by Michigan Department of Transportation on the size, type and location of the sign. Cornish has discussed the matter with MDOT, but a personnel change has delayed input from the department.

Price is also a consideration with additions to the sign. The equestrian team offered to pay for the addition of Kittle’s name and title. Cornish said it isn’t possible for everyone to pay, which adds another complication of who should be listed. He believes there is a question of fairness in the process that must be addressed.

The village is very proud of Kittle’s achievement, as it is for all student accolades, according to Cornish, who added pride doesn’t make the decision process any easier. He expects to consider the matter and decide the outcome not only for Kittle, but for all future Clinton champions.

“We’ll look at it and make an informed decision,” Cornish said.

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