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IHSA Board Approves Terms & Conditions for Athletes with Disabilities in Cross Country, Girls Swimming

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The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Board of Directors made a pair of significant approvals at their regularly scheduled meeting at the IHSA office in Bloomington on Monday, September 10, 2012.

The Board approved the IHSA Terms & Conditions for Athletes with Physical/Visual Disabilities in three separate events. The Terms & Conditions approved at Monday’s meeting were in Girls Swimming & Diving and Boys & Girls Cross Country. The terms and conditions, which are the guidelines that govern IHSA postseason competition, signify another important step in the Association offering its inaugural programs for athletes with disabilities this fall. The Terms & Conditions provide specific details and processes on events that will be offered, classifications and qualifying standards.

In addition, the Board extended the deadlines for schools to enter athletes into these events until October 10.

“This is incredibly important step in providing these important programs,” said IHSA Executive Director Marty Hickman. “We hope that the release of these Terms and Conditions provides clarity for our member schools and their athletes on how this process will work moving forward.”

The Terms & Conditions for each sport are linked below:

Girls Swimming & Diving Terms & Conditions for Athletes with Physical/Visual Disabilities

Boys & Girls Cross Country Diving Terms & Conditions for Athletes with Physical/Visual Disabilities


ACTION ITEMS

1. The Board did not grant a waiver request from the CPS to waive the IHSA By-laws and policies related to strikes, which would have allowed CPS schools to continue to play contests while on strike.

IHSA Executive Director Marty Hickman:
“At the request of the CPS, the IHSA Board considered a request to grant a waiver of IHSA By-law 2.140 which states in part that, ‘No team or other entity representing a member school may participate in an interscholastic contest or activity during the time the member school is not in session due to a strike by teachers or other school personnel.’

It was the conclusion of the Board that granting such a request extended beyond its authority. The IHSA’s By-laws are developed by and voted into practice by its member school principals, and, after some meaningful discussion, the Board ultimately felt respecting the guidelines put in place by our member schools was the only option available in this situation, and any change to the by-laws would need to be facilitated through the IHSA legislative process.

While IHSA By-law 2.140 prohibits schools that are on strike from participating in interscholastic contests, it does establish conditions under which school boards can approve practice sessions for a school that is on strike, should those local school boards wish to do so.”

2. The Board approved a recommendation to edit the IHSA Officials Handbook: Article 1.420, Page 13 (I. C. 3.)
Any official who was licensed and has dropped out without going inactive can buy back the years of service that they missed previously had at a cost of the yearly fee plus a reinstatement fee of $45.00 for one to three years of no license and $75.00 for more than three years. This can only be done with Administrator approval.

This change will prevent an official from “buying back” years when they did not work.

3. The Board approved a recommendation to allow Shelbyville High School and Sullivan High School to dissolve their wrestling coop.

4. The Board approved a recommendation to approve the Arkansas Coaching Endorsement 7-12 as an alternate to an Illinois Teaching Certificate for coaches certification in Illinois.

5. The Board approved a recommendation to appoint members to the Legislative Commission. Kankakee Senior High School Athletic Director Lisa Ferry will fill the vacancy in District 3 for a two-year term and Robinson High School principal Troy Hickey will serve the remaining year on the vacancy in District 14.


APPEALS & ELIGIBILITY RULINGS

1. The Board modified the Executive Director’s ruling on a student from Lombard (Montini). The student was ruled ineligible for non-compliance with IHSA by-laws 3.030 and 3.040 and is now eligible.

2. The Board tabled a ruling on a student from Danville (Schlarman) until more information can be provided.

3. The Board sustained the Executive Director’s ruling that a transfer student from New Lenox (Providence) is ineligible at Minooka. The Board determined that if the student returns to New Lenox (Providence Catholic), the student would be granted immediate eligibility.


DISCUSSION ITEMS

At each meeting of the Board of Directors, there are certain items the Board discusses, but upon which no action is taken. The following is a report of those items from the September 10, 2012, agenda:

1. The Board, IHSA staff and liaisons honored Board President Jim Woodward for his nine years of service to the Board.

2. The Executive Director updated the Board on schools who currently are participating up a class due to waiver requests. All school’s requesting waivers must do so for a two-year period.

School, Sport, Current Class, Waiver Ends
Chicago (St. Rita), Boys Basketball, 4A, 2012-13
East St. Louis (Sr.), Football, 7A, 2012-13
Mt. Carmel, Cheerleading, Medium, 2012-13
Wood River (East Alton-W.R.), Cheerleading, Medium, 2013-14

3. The Board heard a report from Assistant Executive Director Matt Troha on NFHS National High School Activities Month, which will take place during October.

4. The Board heard an update from the Executive Director on the by-law amendment proposals submitted thus far by member schools for the November legislative process. The deadline for by-laws submissions is October 16.

5. The Board heard a report from Assistant Executive Director Craig Anderson on the 2012 IHSA Officials Conference, which was held in Peoria in July.

6. The Board heard a report from Associate Executive Director Kurt Gibson on the concussion policies being used by other state high school associations around the country.

7. The Board heard a report from Associate Executive Director Kurt Gibson on the 2012 IHSA All-School Mailing.

8. The Board discussed allowing exemptions for emerging sports to play contests against non-school teams.

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