Athletic Liability FAQs

Athletic Liability FAQs

What is the McGrath Athletic Training?

This program is designed to train your coaches and athletic directors in daily practices and procedures that protect athletes from harm and minimize the risk of liability for a school district or parks and recreation district.


Who is the training for?
The training is for full-time, part-time, and seasonal coaches, athletic directors, athletic trainers and volunteers. Different versions are available for K-12 school district personnel, college and university athletic programs, and municipal leagues.


Why do coaches need this training?
Athletics is an area of great exposure for schools and public agencies. The cost of claims can be very high as can the cost to athletes when we get it wrong. There simply isn’t a training program out there that is comparable to what we provide. We make the law digestible and practicable for athletic personnel. We give them tools, checklists and clear guidance on what legally fit supervision and instruction looks like on the playing field, on the road and in the locker room.


Who are your trainers?
Our trainers are both legal experts and experienced coaches – a rare combination. They know the territory first hand and have an appreciation for the issues and concerns of your coaching staff. Simply put, they speak the language of sports and coaching and are able to truly engage their audience.


Will this training protect my district from liability?
An analysis of applicable laws, federal guidelines and case law demonstrates the complexity and sensitivity of the issues surrounding sports law. This is an area of law that is continually growing as the courts, state legislatures and administrative agencies attempt to further define and hammer out the scope of the liability issues.


While it is impossible to cover all bases on which liability may attach, minimizing the risks of harm and liability, comes from: having and following explicit written policies, providing regular training and education to employees in their duties and responsibilities and how to fulfill them, and eliminating practices that are not legally fit. The McGrath Athletic Liability Training Program leaves your district fully trained and prepared to implement legally fit practices and procedures, providing the best possible protection for all.

Is this training available for staff and educators in extracurricular settings besides athletics?
Yes, please see our Educator Liability programs.


Do you have videos on athletic liability?
No. But we do have videos on sexual harassment and abuse and school bullying which may be utilized with your coaching staff.


I live in another state. Will your program still apply?
Yes, we conduct our training with educators throughout the United States and Canada, and our programs are designed with this audience in mind. We take into account both applicable federal law and legal precedents as well as directing you toward compliance with your state and local laws and regulations. We also ask that you provide us with a copy of your organization’s policies in advance so that we can tailor the training for your needs.


Who is program designer Mary Jo McGrath?
Mary Jo McGrath, Attorney at Law, is the founder of McGrath Training Systems with nearly 30 years experience specializing in employee performance issues and legal mandates in the workplace. She is acknowledged as a national expert in labor relations and discrimination law, supervision and discipline of employees, and leadership skills.


Ms. McGrath has been the featured legal expert on CBS’ Eye to Eye, The CBS Evening News with Dan Rather, and 48 Hours on the issue of sexual harassment, and on ABC’s 20/20 on the issue of teacher quality and performance. She is the featured legal expert in a number of print publications including The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, Redbook Magazine, Reader’s Digest, Seventeen Magazine, The Christian Science Monitor, The School Administrator and several other nationally circulated professional journals.

Ms. McGrath is the author and developer of the McGrath Training Systems’ professional development programs and curricula that include live trainings, video trainings, and web-based distance learning on a variety of topics including: leadership, accountability, constructive communication, employee supervision and evaluation, gender equity, athletic liability, cultural and racial diversity, bullying, educator sexual abuse, and sexual harassment prevention and intervention. In 2011, her new book Bullying and Harassment Solutions for Schools: How to Educate, Investigate and Remediate.

What are the fees for live workshops and how do I schedule a workshop in my district?
Costs vary depending on length of training, location, and class size. For more information, or to schedule a workshop, please call McGrath Training Systems at 800-733-1638.