BOYS BASKETBALL: Clarkston 2018 F Thomas Kithier (Signed with #MichiganState) has been ruled ineligible for the 2017-18 season by the MHSAA. Kithier played the previous three years at Macomb Dakota. pic.twitter.com/crqXcxxlO9
— STATE CHAMPS! (@statechampsnet) December 8, 2017
(12-7-17) 6’9 Clarkson transfer Thomas Kithier, a Michigan State commit, has been ruled ineligible by the Michigan High School Athletic Association and won’t play this season for the Wolves.
Clarkston is the SSN Pre-Season National Public High School #1 Ranked team.
MLive You Tube Video – Clarkston basketball coach Dan Fife reads a statement
Media Statement on Thomas Kithier’s MHSAA Eligibility Dec. 7, 2017 –
Clarkston High School student-athlete Thomas Kithier has been ruled ineligible by the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) to participate in high school athletics for a total of 180 scheduled school days (the duration of his senior year). The MHSAA alleges Kithier, who resides in Clarkston with his family, is in violation of the association’s athletic-motivated transfer rule.
The MHSAA investigation stems from complaints filed by Macomb Dakota High School, Kithier’s former school, and the school’s refusal to sign Kithier’s Educational Transfer form (which would have granted him immediate eligibility). In response, Clarkston Community Schools has pursued all available appeals with the MHSAA to protect the rights of all students to pursue their passions without unnecessary barriers.
Superintendent of Clarkston Community Schools Dr. Rod Rock:
“As superintendent, I will not tolerate injustice, prejudice, or arbitrarily limiting students. We will not impose adult decisions that hamper long-term achievements upon them. We will stand up for every student, in every case. Just as we expect our Wolves to fight until the final whistle on the playing field, in the arena, in the classroom, and when battling life’s obstacles, we will fight for Thomas Kithier – he’s our kid.”
Clarkston Principal Gary Kaul:
“The Kithier family made an educated and thoughtful decision to move the Clarkston school district because it provides the academic opportunities and an inclusive, supporting environment they felt was necessary for Thomas to grow as a student and a person. These are the opportunities we embrace for all students, are at the core of who we are, and guide our principles. Thomas and his family found themselves in an academic situation he could not benefit from and a toxic cultural environment that was untenable and unhealthy. By blocking this transfer Dakota administration demonstrated that they do not have Thomas best interests in mind.”
Kithier family comments on the ruling.
“Our move to Clarkston was a private family decision and one that we did not take lightly. We watched as our son’s school environment grew increasingly intolerable for him over two years, and we knew that staying at Macomb Dakota High School was not in his best interest. We researched several Michigan schools, and found Clarkston’s outstanding culture and academic curriculum to be a great fit for Thomas’ needs and future goals. Thomas is thriving socially and academically at Clarkston High School, but as a lifelong student-athlete, he is heartbroken to be denied the opportunity to participate in sports. We followed the rules, and our one and only motivation for transferring to Clarkston was to surround our son with a supportive community that sees him as a multifaceted human being, not a commodity.”