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Interscholastic Athletics


ItemDescription
Policy TitleInterscholastic Athletics
Policy CategoryAthletics (ATHL)
Policy IDATHL-001
Policy Date2017-07-06
Previous Policy Dates07/01/1995, 11/05/1998, 05/06/1999, 08/01/2000, 10/02/2008, 02/03/2011, 07/11/2012, 08/04/2016
Statutory ReferenceGS 115C-47(4)

Formerly HRS-D-001

 

INTERSCHOLASTIC ATHLETICS

 

Local Education Agencies (LEAs) and Charter School boards are authorized to determine whether and to what extent students in grades 6-12 may participate in interscholastic athletics; provided, however, that students in sixth grade are not eligible to participate in football.

  1. In order to qualify for public school participation, a student must meet the following requirements:
    1. The student must meet the residence criteria of G.S. 115C-366(a).  The student may participate only at the school to which the student is assigned by the LEA or, if over the age requirements, the school to which the student would be assigned at the next higher grade level.
    2. The student must meet age requirements at each grade level to participate. The principal must have evidence of the legal birth date of the student. A student who is ineligible to participate at one grade level due to age is eligible to participate at the next higher grade level only.  However, no student may participate at the high school level for more than eight consecutive semesters, beginning with the student's first entry into grade nine or participation on a high school team, whichever occurs first.   No student may be eligible to participate at the middle school level for a period lasting longer than six consecutive semesters, beginning with the student's entry into sixth grade.
      1. A student is eligible to participate in high school athletic contests during a school year if the student does not reach the 19th birthday on or before August 31 of that school year.
      2. A student shall not participate on a ninth grade junior high school team if the student becomes 16 years of age on or before August 31 of that school year.
      3. A student shall not participate on a sixth, seventh or eighth grade team if the student becomes 15 years of age on or before August 31 of that school year.
    3. In grades 9-12, the student must pass at least five courses (or the equivalent for non-traditional school schedules) each semester to be eligible anytime during the present semester and meet promotion standards established by the LEA/Charter School.  In grades 6, 7 and 8, the student must pass at least one less course than the number of required core courses each semester and meet promotion standards established by the LEA/Charter School.  Regardless of the school organization pattern, a student who is promoted from the eighth grade to the ninth grade automatically meets the courses passed requirement for the first semester of the ninth grade.  Regardless of the school organization pattern, a student who is promoted from the fifth grade to the sixth grade automatically meets the courses passed requirement for the first semester of the sixth grade.  
    4. The student must receive a medical examination each year by a duly licensed physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant, subject to the provisions of G.S. 90-9, 90-18.1, and 90-18.2.
    5. The student may not participate after any of the following:
      1. graduation;
      2. becoming eligible to graduate;
      3. signing a professional athletic contract;
      4. receiving remuneration as a participant in an athletic contest; or
      5. participating on an all-star team or in an all-star game that is not sanctioned by the association of which the student's school is a member.  The student is ineligible only for the specific sport involved.
  2. Each principal of a school, which participates in interscholastic athletics must certify a list of eligible students for each sport.
  3. Any student-athlete, coach or school official in grades 6-12 who is ejected from any athletic contest shall at least be penalized as follows:
    1. for the first offense, the person shall be reprimanded and suspended for the next game at that level of play (varsity or junior varsity) and for any intervening games at either level;
    2. for a second offense, the person shall be placed on probation and suspended for the next two games at that level of play (varsity or junior varsity) and for any intervening games at either level;
    3. for a third offense, the person shall be suspended for one calendar year;
    4. a coach who is suspended at any level of grades 6-12 (middle school, junior high or high school) may not coach in any other grade level in grades 6-12 during the period of suspension.
    5. Penalties are cumulative from sport to sport and from sport season to sport season.  If no member of the school's coaching staff is present to assume an ejected coach's duties, the contest shall be terminated by a forfeit.
  4. LEAs/Charter Schools may allow their schools to belong to the North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA), which has established as a minimum the rules adopted by the SBE.  The NCHSAA may waive any eligibility requirement contained in this Rule, except the age requirement, if it finds that the rule fails to accomplish its purpose or it works an undue hardship when applied to a particular student.  The NCHSAA may enforce penalties for the violation of this Rule at the high school level.
  5. The LEA/Charter School which has jurisdiction over the high school may impose additional penalties.  LEAs/Charter Schools or conferences may adopt and impose penalties at the middle and junior high school levels.
  6. The Middle/Junior High School Athletic Manual is available at the following link:  http://www.ncpublicschools.org/docs/curriculum/healthfulliving/athletics/middle-athletics-manual.pdf

 

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