IHSA Board Approves Multiplier Waiver Changes, Adds Success Advancement Component
The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Board of Directors met at its regularly scheduled meeting at the IHSA office in Bloomington on Wednesday, February 19, 2014, where the Board approved a recommendation to amend Board Policy 17, specifically related to the non-boundaried school multiplier waiver. The changes establish a point system to determine whether a school receives a multiplier waiver, while also adding a Success Advancement step that will move schools who reach certain thresholds up in classification.
“This recommendation was brought forward with unanimous support from the committee,” said IHSA Executive Director Marty Hickman. “Frankly, I’m not sure the Board would have even considered it if that were not the case. The committee’s makeup was a microcosm of our membership; represented by schools large and small, private and public, city and rural. For such a diverse group to agree on this proposal was a powerful statement to our Board and we appreciate their efforts.”
The recommendation was a result of 15-person ad hoc committee that was charged with reviewing the merits of a “success factor.” The committee, which included representation from 10 public high schools and five non-boundaried high schools, was comprised of member school principals, athletic directors and coaches. The Board approved the formation of the committee at its meeting in June, 2013 and the group met three times over the course of the current school year.
“I feel like we are moving in the right direction with these new rules,” said Gordon Tech Principal Jim Quaid, an IHSA Board member who served on the committee. “The original IHSA multiplier painted all non-boundaried schools with the same broad brush. The prior changes to the waiver and this success advancement policy are positive steps toward looking at each school’s programs individually. We believe that this formula is an accurate assessment of the overall strength of a program.”
In the new formula, a non-boundaried school will accrue one point for a Regional title and two points for a Sectional title, although a school that wins both a Regional and a Sectional in the same year will earn only two points. Schools who earn four points or more in a four-year span or qualify for the state finals once in that timeframe will not be eligible for a waiver. As a part of Monday’s changes, the timeframe for determining waivers was shortened from six years to four years. There were no changes in the application of the waiver system in football, where winning a first round playoff game will continue to be the threshold for determining waiver eligibility.
“The public-private debate is a hot issue around the country, but I think a proactive approach in Illinois has helped us avoid many of the issues engulfing other states,” said Hickman. “Clearly there was some give and take in this process between by the committee. The multiplier waiver period was shortened, while those non-boundaried schools who have experienced success beyond the norm will play up a classification.”
The new Success Advancement step will move schools up a classification if they achieve the following:
In football over four years:
1. Participated in two state championship games.
2. Starting with the 2015 season, schools would be moved up two classes from their enrollment classification if, over a four year period, the school participated in three championship games.
3. Starting with the 2016 season, schools would be moved up three classes from their enrollment classification if, over a four year period, the school participated in four championship games.
4. Schools that move up more than one class due to the implementation of the above criteria will move down one class per year until they reach their appropriate classification for their enrollment should they stop meeting the advancement criteria outlined above.
In Bracketed Team Sports/Activities (baseball, basketball, scholastic bowl, soccer, softball, volleyball, water polo, wrestling) over four years:
1. Participated twice in the final four of a particular sport/activity.
In Non-Bracketed Sports over four years:
1. Won two trophies at the state finals in a particular sport/activity.
“Illinois is the largest state in the country that is still playing state championships with all of its member schools under one umbrella,” said committee member and University High School of Chicago Athletic Director Dave Ribbens, “I believe that is important to the tradition of the state and I applaud the IHSA and member schools for being able to keep that together.”
1. The Board approved a recommendation to convene a special session of the Legislative
Commission to consider a by-law proposal to modify the summer football by-laws. The proposal,
which can be viewed in its entirety by clicking here, would eliminate full pad contact from
occurring during the summer contact period. If approved by the Legislative Commission, the
proposal would be placed on an all-school ballot and need a majority vote to become a by-law.
IHSA Executive Director Marty Hickman:
“There are certainly pockets of coaches who wanted to see some element of full contact practice left in the summer contact period. Ultimately, the Football Advisory Committee supported the recommended policy, and the majority of coaches we spoke with felt like the change had little to no impact on how they currently conduct their summer practices. We believe this change would be in the best interest of the football student-athletes and the future of the game. We hope the Legislative Commission, and membership, will support this proposal as it moves forward.
2. The Board approved the following Board Meeting schedule for the 2014-15 school year:
August 25, 2014
September 15, 2014
October 15, 2014
December 15, 2014
January 12, 2015
February 18, 2015
March 21, 2015
April 21, 2015
June 15, 2015
3. The IHSA Board approved a recommendation to recognize US Football as a National
Governing Body for football.
4. The Board approved a one-time exemption to allow the Chicago Public Schools to hold their
Cheerleading and Pom city tournament in March beyond the end of the official IHSA season.
5. The Board approved updates to the policy and procedures for submitting a request for accommodations for Students with disabilities.
ADVISORY COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS
Minutes from all Advisory Committees can be viewed by clicking here.
1. The Board approved the consent items from the Advisory Committees in the following sports & activities: Golf, Student Advisory, Tennis and Volleyball.
Consent items are recommendations that received approval from the sport/activity advisory committee, the Athletic Administrators Advisory Committee and the IHSA staff. Consent items can be viewed by clicking here.
Some items of note include:
1. During the State Series, the head coach and one assistant coach will be allowed to coach their
players anywhere on the course except the green. Communication may not take place until all
players have putted out on that hole. Previously, coach contact was limited to the time when a
player putted out until they reached the next tee box.
1. The IHSA will begin assigning Line Judges for the Sectional and Super-Sectional rounds in the
The Board approved the following items from the Non-Consent list:
1. The use of Observers has been eliminated from State Series events.
1. Increased the fees for line judges for each State Series match.
2. Increased the host school guarantee to directly cover the cost from the line judge payment
1. The Board sustained the Executive Director’s ruling on a student from Chicago (Holy Trinity).
The student was ruled ineligible for non-compliance with IHSA by-law 3.040 and its sub-sections.
2. The Board sustained the Executive Director’s ruling suspending the Homewood-Flossmoor Girls’ Basketball team and head coach Anthony Smith from participating in the 2014 IHSA State Series. Click here for Release.
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 February 19, 2014, agenda:
1. The Board heard a report from Assistant Executive Director Matt Troha on new PSA announcements produced in conjunction with the NFHS and IADA. The PSAs are being sent to every radio station in the state and can be heard or downloaded at: www.ihsa.org/NewsMedia/NewsMediaCenter/Multimedia.aspx
2. The Board heard a report from the Executive Director on the IHSA nominations for the NFHS
Heart of the Arts Award and NFHS Spirit of Sport Award. The IHSA has nominated Meridian
(Macon) High School’s Jordan Brewer for the Heart of the Arts Award and Sacred Heart-Griffin
High School for the Spirit of Sport Award. Click here for more on Jordan and Sacred Heart-Griffin’s nomination.