BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ó

                                                                       AB 949

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          949 (Gonzalez)

          As Amended  May 6, 2015

          Majority vote

          |Committee       |Votes |Ayes                |Noes                  |
          |                |      |                    |                      |
          |                |      |                    |                      |
          |Arts            |6-0   |Calderon,           |                      |
          |                |      |Obernolte, Chu,     |                      |
          |                |      |Levine, Medina,     |                      |
          |                |      |Nazarian            |                      |
          |                |      |                    |                      |
          |Education       |7-0   |O'Donnell, Chávez,  |                      |
          |                |      |Kim, McCarty,       |                      |
          |                |      |Santiago, Thurmond, |                      |
          |                |      |Weber               |                      |
          |                |      |                    |                      |
          |Appropriations  |17-0  |Gomez, Bigelow,     |                      |
          |                |      |Bonta, Calderon,    |                      |
          |                |      |Chang, Daly,        |                      |
          |                |      |Eggman, Gallagher,  |                      |
          |                |      |                    |                      |
          |                |      |                    |                      |
          |                |      |Eduardo Garcia,     |                      |
          |                |      |Gordon, Holden,     |                      |
          |                |      |Jones, Quirk,       |                      |


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          |                |      |Rendon, Wagner,     |                      |
          |                |      |Weber, Wood         |                      |
          |                |      |                    |                      |
          |                |      |                    |                      |

          SUMMARY:  Would require the California Interscholastic Federation  
          (CIF), in consultation with the State Department of Education, to  
          develop guidelines, procedures, and safety standards for the  
          purpose of classifying competition cheer as an interscholastic  
          sport, as specified, no later than July 1, 2017. This bill would  
          also require the CIF to seek a United States Department of  
          Education Office for Civil Rights Title IX compliance designation  
          for competition cheer, and would specify that competition cheer  
          shall not be counted toward a school's Title IX compliance unless  
          the United States Department of Education's Office for Civil  
          Rights deems competition cheer compliant with its definition of a  
          FISCAL EFFECT:  According to the Assembly Appropriations  
          Committee, there are no additional costs for the California  
          Department of Education for consultation with the CIF, which is  
          not a state-funded entity.

          COMMENTS:  This bill creates competition cheer as a new  
          interscholastic sport governed by the CIF.  With the creation of  
          competition cheer as a new interscholastic sport, participants in  
          the sport will be governed by rules adopted by CIF, competition  
          cheer coaches will be required to complete the same training as  
          all other interscholastic coaches, and participants will be  
          eligible for an exemption from physical education courses, like  
          all other interscholastic sport participants.  It should be noted  
          that competition cheer is different than sideline cheer.   
          Competition cheer will be regulated like all other interscholastic  
          sports, meaning that they will compete in regular direct  
          competitions with other teams, and only compete during one season.  
           Sideline cheer that you might see at football and basketball  
          games is not competition cheer and will not be considered an  


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          interscholastic sport. 

          According to the author, this bill would create new safety  
          guidelines for training and potentially spark changes in athletic  
          department funding for cheer at California high schools.  The  
          recognition of cheer as an official sport will provide resources  
          to cheer coaches and cheerleaders consistent with other  
          CIF-sanctioned sports.  The benefits of having the same CIF  
          standards will ensure a certain level of coaching competency and  
          skill once safety guidelines are developed by the California  
          Department of Education and CIF.  Incidents of cheer injuries -  
          including fractures, spinal damage, head injuries, concussions and  
          paralysis - have increased (as cheer has become more popular).   
          According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, in 2011,  
          there were almost 37,000 emergency room visits for cheer injuries.  
           Cheer injuries account for approximately 65% of all catastrophic  
          injuries in girls' high school athletics, according to a recent  
          report by the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury  
          Research at the University of North Carolina.  The medical field  
          has recognized the dramatically increase popularity of cheer and  
          injuries.  The American Academy of Pediatrics issued a policy  
          statement and The American Medical Association adopted the policy  
          to consider cheer a sport because of its rigors and risks.

          Please see Assembly Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism, and  
          Internet Media analysis for full discussion of the measure.

          Analysis Prepared by:                                               
                          Dana Mitchell / A.,E.,S.,T., & I.M. / (916)  
          FN: 0000528


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