IHSA Board Makes Interpretations On Two New By-Laws for 2013-14

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Board of Directors approved interpretations on a pair of by-laws for the 2013-2014 school year at its regularly scheduled meeting at the IHSA office in Bloomington on Tuesday, April 16, 2013.

In January, IHSA member schools voted to approve all 11 by-laws that were proposed by the membership, which will officially take effect on July 1, 2013. The two by-laws that required additional interpretations by the Board on Monday were By-laws 3.034.3 and 3.043.3. 

The proposal for By-law 3.034.3 reads: “Limits eligibility of international students to those students in foreign exchange programs approved by the IHSA and the Council on Standards for International Education Travel (CSIET), for a maximum of one school term.”

The Board ruled that international students who participated as eligible student-athletes during the 2012-13 school term under the provisions of the previously applicable by-law shall not lose eligibility under the new by-law.

“This ruling means that International students who participated last year will remain eligible until their eligibility is exhausted,” said IHSA Executive Director Marty Hickman. “All other international students will now need to be placed in a member school via a placement program that is approved by both CSIET and the IHSA in order to be eligible for athletics.”

The proposal for By-law 3.043.3 reads: “Removes the automatic eligibility provision for first-time transfers from a private school to a home public school, or from a private school to another private school, and requires in the case of any transfer not accompanied by a change in residence to another high school attendance area that the transfer be necessitated by (a) a change in the family’s financial position or (b) extenuating circumstances documented by the sending school.”

The Board interpretation on 3.043.3 centered around what date should be considered the first day of attendance by a transfer student in this scenario. The Board ultimately decided that a transfer is not official until a student begins attendance at the school in the fall or participates in a practice or tryout for a fall sports team on or after August 14. Additionally, for the purpose of this by-law, summer school attendance shall not count towards the student's attendance.

“This interpretation simply reaffirms the timeline that the schools and our office will work with when determining eligibility in transfer situations related to this by-law,” said Hickman. “It is an interpretation that is consistent with what has been done in the past with changes to the residence and transfer by-laws.”

Both of the by-laws that the Board made interpretations on during Monday’s meeting were proposed by a Residency/Transfer Ad-Hoc Committee that met during the fall of 2012. 

“Both of these by-laws, 3.034.3 and 3.043.3, represent pretty significant philosophical changes in the IHSA’s residence and transfer rules,” said Hickman. “The fact both passed unanimously shows that our membership felt that changes were necessary to deal with a changing high school landscape.”

1. The Board approved a recommendation to authorize the Executive Director to appoint member school Athletic Directors to serve as Tellers for IHSA Nominations, Elections and Proposals during the 2013-14 school year.

2. The Board approved a recommendation to raise base officials fees by five dollars ($5) for the 2013-14 school year. In addition, officials’ post-season reimbursement will be raised ten dollars ($10). Secondary licensing fees will remain at fifteen dollars ($15).

3. The Board approved a recommendation to reemploy the Associate Executive Director and Assistant Executive Directors.

1. The Board sustained the Executive Director’s ruling on a student from Elgin (Westminster Christian). The student was ruled ineligible for non-compliance with IHSA By-law 3.040 and its

2. The Board sustained the Executive Director’s ruling on a student from Hume (Shiloh). The student was ruled ineligible for non-compliance with IHSA By-law 3.047.

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 Tuesday, April 16, 2013, agenda:

1. Peru (St. Bede) Principal Michelle Mershon and Vice President of Mission Advancement Father Philip Davey, OSP appeared before the Board for a discussion regarding IHSA By-law Amendment Proposal 7 (3.034.3).

2. The Executive Director updated the Board on plans for the NFHS Summer Meeting, which is scheduled from June 23 through June 27 in Denver, Colorado.