Malden R-I School District Athletic Policy

Purpose:

The purpose of the Malden R-I School District Athletic Policy is to provide direction, coordination, and information to parents, student athletes, coaches and administration.  

Affiliation:

The Malden R-I School District is a member of the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA) and as a member school agrees to follow all MSHSAA rules and regulations as a minimum standard for participation.  Additionally, the Malden R-I School District is a member of the SEMO Conference for Football, Golf and Track and the Bootheel Conference for all other sports.

Activities Covered Under this Policy:

This policy covers all sports and cheerleading for grades 7 – 12 offered by the Malden R-I School District as a Board of Education program and under the direction of coach under contract with the Malden R-I School District.

Student Eligibility:

  1. Enrollment:          In order to represent the Malden R-I School District an athlete must be enrolled within the first eleven days of the semester (except transfer students) and regularly attend school at least six (6) out of seven (7) periods per day.  Regular attendance is defined as not being in violation of the approved Malden R-I School District Attendance Policy which is published annually in the student handbook.
  2. Citizenship:  Student athletes must be creditable citizens.  Credible citizens are those students whose conduct - both in school and out of school - will not reflect discredit upon themselves or the Malden R-I School District.  
  3. Academics:  The Malden R-I School District recognizes that the first responsibility of a student athlete is their education and subsequent academic performance in the classroom.  In order to ensure the academic performance of its student athletes, each four and one half (4-1/2) weeks during the school year grade reports are issued to all students. Participants’ grades will be checked at the end of each grading period (each 4-1/2 weeks at progress report time or at the end of the quarter).  A student athlete receiving a grade below 60% (F) at a 4-1/2 week grading period will become ineligible on the following Monday.  A student, who has become ineligible, will become immediately eligible if the student raises the grade above 60% (F) if it is the first instance.  For the second and subsequent instances of a grade below 60% (F), the student will continue to remain ineligible until the next 4-1/2 week grading period or the next 4-1/2 week grading period that the student’s grade is above 60% (F).  It is the responsibility of the student to correct any deficient grades.  In addition to district policy the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA) requires that a student athlete pass six (6) classes of our seven (7) period school day each semester.  Should a student pass only five (5) classes at the end of the semester, the student will be academically ineligible for the following semester.  This standard also applies to an incoming seventh (7th) grade student as he/she cannot fail more than 2 classes the last semester of the sixth (6th) grade year in order to participate in first semester of seventh (7th) grade.  
  4. Attendance at School:  To be eligible to participate in a contest in accordance with guidelines established by the MSHSAA a student must be in attendance a full day unless excused by the high school principal.  Generally, the high school principal will utilize the same requirements to excuse attendance for participation as outlined in the Malden High School Attendance Policy for excused absences.  Additionally, a student who misses school and is ineligible to participate, remains ineligible to participate until the student attends a full day of school.  For instance, if a student misses school on Friday, the student is not eligible to participate again until after attending a full day of school on Monday.  Also, if a student misses the last day of school before Christmas break and is not excused by the high school principal, the student remains ineligible until the student attends a full day of classes after Christmas break ends.  In the case of a student who is absent from school the last two days of the semester due to the semester finals policy, the student is considered excused by the high school principal and is eligible to participate.
  5. Age Requirements:  

Grades 9-12:  In order to be eligible to participate, students cannot have reached the age of 19 by July 1 of the previous year.  

Grades 7-8:  Over aged students will be moved up to the next higher level to become eligible.  If a student has reached the age of 14 prior to July 1 of the previous year, the student will be moved to an 8th grade only competition.  If a student reaches the age of 15 prior to July 1 of the previous year, the student will be moved to 9th grade and above competition.

  1. Amateur and Awards Status:  After entering a MSHSAA member school, students will become ineligible in the sport concerned if they receive cash or services for participating in an athletic contest or being an athlete. This restriction applies to all sports in which MSHSAA member schools conduct interscholastic programs. (Merchandise received shall not exceed $100 manufacturer's suggested retail price.)  
  2. Nonschool Competition:  According to MSHSAA guidelines, a student may not practice for or participate with a nonschool team or in any organized nonschool athletic competition and for Malden in the same sport during the same season of the school team.  Students may participate on a Malden team and a nonschool team in different sports during the same season; however, students may not practice or participate for the Malden team and the nonschool team without prior approval of the high school principal.  If you plan to miss school to travel to, practice for or compete in an organized nonschool competition you must receive approval in advance from the high school principal.  Before a student joins a nonschool team or enters any nonschool competitive event, the high school principal should be consulted to ensure these standards are being met to protect his/her eligibility.
  3. College Auditions and Tryouts:  Students may participate in a college tryout, audition or evaluation event for a specific sport outside the school season of the sport concerned. A student may not miss school time to travel or participate in the out of season event unless your absence is approved in advance by the high school principal. Students may not miss a MSHSAA-sponsored postseason athletic event to participate in or travel to and from the event. Students may only attend one evaluation event by invitation per sport per year, but may attend any number of "open" evaluations (anyone may register) with no limit on college-sponsored tryouts.  Secure approval from the high school principal before signing up and agreeing to attend any such event.  
  4. Sports Camps and Clinics:  Students may attend a nonschool sponsored summer specialized sports camp(s) or group instruction for as long as they wish where they do not receive instruction or coaching from a member of Malden High School’s coaching staff. No summer specialized sports camp involving a fall season sport shall be attended after July 31. During the school year outside of the school sport season, a student may attend a nonschool-sponsored specialized sports camp(s) or group instruction, provided: it does not result in any loss of school time, attendance does not occur within 14 days of the start of the school sport season for the sport concerned, it is not a team camp, no competition occurs other than limited scrimmaging, and no member of the Malden High School coaching staff is involved in any way. During the school sport season, a student may attend a nonschool-sponsored specialized sports camp(s) or group instruction provided a Malden High School coach attends with the student, camp attendance does not result in any loss of school time, it is not a team camp, there is no competition other than limited scrimmaging, and a school administrator approves the student’s participation.  If an individual sport skills camp is sponsored by a school, a) a student may attend any camp of their choice up to and including the summer preceding their entry into the 8th grade or b) after the student enters the 8th grade, he/she may only attend a school-sponsored sports camp at the school he/she is enrolled to attend (for graduation) in grades 9-12 (unless a transfer in grades 9-12 occurs). The student or his or her parents must pay all camp/clinic fees, tuition and other related expenses. A scholarship, waiver of fees or a payment of travel expenses shall result in the loss of the student’s eligibility.  A student may attend one sport camp per sport per year by special invitation and a student may attend any number of "open" sport camps where anyone may register.  No school-owned uniforms or school owned equipment shall be used in any camp, clinic or group sport lesson other than team camps where the school coach is present as one of the two weeks of school camp. Member schools may not rent, sell, lease or loan their uniforms or player equipment for use in non-school sponsored camps, clinics or contests. NOTE: Before attending any specialized athletic camp(s)/clinic(s) or group sport instruction, a student should consult with the Malden High School principal to make sure it meets the criteria published in the MSHSAA Official Handbook.  
  5. Disciplinary Action:  Students representing Malden R-I School District in athletic activities are expected to adhere to an exemplary code of conduct.  Failure to abide by the rules of the student handbook will result in penalties.  Student representatives are expected to show respect to all with whom they come in contact, both in school and when representing the school at home and away.  The Principal may declare a student ineligible for any violation(s) of school policies.  In addition to the student handbook, student athletes may receive restriction from participation.

Law Enforcement: A student who commits an act for which charges may be or have been filed by law enforcement authorities under any municipal ordinance, misdemeanor or felony statute shall not be eligible until all proceedings with the legal system have been concluded and any penalty (i.e. jail time, fine, court costs, etc.) or special condition of probation (i.e. restitution, community service, counseling, etc.) has been satisfied. If law enforcement authorities determine that charges will not be filed, eligibility will be contingent upon local school policies. Moving traffic offenses shall not affect eligibility, unless they involve drugs, alcohol, or injuries to others. After a student has completed all court appearances and penalties, and has satisfied all special conditions of probation and remains under general probation only, local school authorities shall determine eligibility.

Student Responsibility:  In accordance with the rules established by the Missouri High School Activities Association (MSHSAA) each student is responsible to notify the school of any and all situations that would affect his/her eligibility under the ‘Law Enforcement’ standards above. If the student does not notify the school of the situation prior to the school‘s discovery, then the student shall be ineligible for up to 365 days from discovery, pending review by the MSHSAA Board of Directors.  

Local School:

  1. A student who violates a local school policy is ineligible until completion of the prescribed school penalties.
  2. b. The eligibility of a student who is serving detention or in-school suspension shall be determined by local school authorities.
  3. A student shall not be considered eligible while serving an out-of-school suspension.
  4.  A student who is expelled or who withdraws from school because of disciplinary measures shall not be considered eligible for 365 days from the date of expulsion or withdrawal.
  5.  If a student misses class(es) without being excused by the principal, the student shall not be considered eligible on that date. Further, the student cannot be certified eligible to participate on any subsequent date until the student attends a full day of classes.
  6.  Each individual school has the authority to set more restrictive citizenship standards and shall have the authority and responsibility to judge its students under those standards.
  7.  Each school shall diligently and completely investigate any issue that could affect student eligibility.

Specific Instances:  Alcohol and Illegal Drugs - The use, possession, and distribution of alcohol and illegal drugs are prohibited whether on or off campus.  If the school receives reliable information, verified to satisfaction of the administration, which incriminates the student, the following penalties will apply:

                        First Offense                Second Offense                Third Offense    

 Use or Possession        15 school days                30 school days                365 calendar days

                        First Offense                Second Offense

Distribution                45 school days                remainder of student eligibility

School days apply during the athletic season that the student is participating in only.  For instance, if a student is not currently in a sports season, his/her ineligibility will begin when the next sports season that they participate in begins.   If his/her ineligibility would begin with the fall sports season, which begins before the first day of school, then the ineligibility will begin with the first day that school is in session.   Athletes affected by this policy will continue to practice, but not participate in any contests, until the ineligibility period is served.  

 If applicable, student representatives are also subject to disciplinary penalties as outlined in the student handbook in addition to the penalties listed above.

Arrests, Misdemeanors and Felonies and Adjudication of Juveniles - If a student that participates in the Malden R-1 School District Athletic Program is arrested or charged- by a law enforcement agency and/or juvenile authorities, - the student will not be allowed to practice and compete until the outcome of the legal proceedings is known or until a confession is made.  

School employees who become aware of a possible violation will notify the high school principal who will review all incidents.  The high school principal will make all decisions regarding penalties concerning arrest or formal charges.  The high school principal will inform the student and his/her parents/guardian, the Superintendent, and the Malden R-I School District Board of Education of the final decision regarding penalties.  

If the school receives reliable information, verified to satisfaction of the administration, which incriminates the student, the following penalties will apply:

Misdemeanor        First Offense                Second Offense                Third Offense  

Class A                15 school days                20 school days                365 calendar days

Class B                10 school days                15 school days                365 calendar days

Class C                5 school days                10 school days                365 calendar days

Felony                 First Offense                Second Offense

                        45 school days                remainder of student eligibility

The above penalties will be imposed on juveniles in the same manner as if they were an adult and committed the same offense.  City court penalties will be interpreted as if the penalty was assessed in county or state court.

Due Process - Students who are disciplined because of the violation of any of the Guidelines for Co-Curricular Activity Participation will be given the opportunity for due process.  The student will be given oral or written notice of the specific violation and the intended penalties.  The student will be given the opportunity to explain their position before any disciplinary penalties are invoked.

Appeals Process - If disciplinary action results in the suspension of a student  from participation  in a co-curricular program for a longer period of time than one (1) week, the student may appeal to the Superintendent of Schools and ultimately to the Malden R-I School District Board of Education, according to their policies and procedures.

Practice:

In order to maximize the opportunity for team success, attendance at practice is critical.  Therefore the following standard has been established by the Malden R-I School District and is applied to all athletic programs in order to provide consistency.  It is the responsibility of the head coach to keep a record of all attendance in accordance with this policy.  

Missed practices are either excused or unexcused and will be defined in the same manner as outlined in the student handbook.  In either case, the head coach will assess the requirement to make up a missed practice.  A student may miss no more than two (2) unexcused practices or games during an athletic season and remain on the team or squad.  A student may miss no more than two (2) excused practices or games during an athletic season and remain on the team or squad.   If a student is under a doctor’s care and is not allowed to practice or participate in contests, that student may miss, without penalty, the number of days that the doctor has deemed that the student is unable to practice, not withstanding that the head coach of the sport may have certain conditioning requirements that may have to be met before the student may participate in a contest once again.

Practices will be scheduled to the extent possible to maximize student’s opportunity for educational success and to minimize conflicts when possible.  Coaches and other activities sponsors along with the administration will work together to schedule practice with the least amount of conflicts.  Practice in the mornings before school is permitted only when there are contests scheduled in the gymnasiums after school and is approved by the high school principal, except that football may practice before school the first week that school is in session to facilitate two-a-days.  

Conditioning Requirement:

The Missouri State High School Activities Association requires all student athletes to complete 14 days of conditioning prior to the first contest that the athlete participates in.  This requirement is for all sports except cheerleading and golf which has a 10 day conditioning requirement.  In order to meet the conditioning requirement a student athlete must practice on separate days, two practices in one day only count one day toward meeting the conditioning requirement.  Head coaches will record attendance at practice as verification that all student athletes are eligible to participate in a contest.  

In cases where a student athlete is going from one sport to another, for example, football to basketball, and the student athlete begins participation in the new sport within seven days of the end of the prior sport, the 14 day conditioning rule is waived.

Physicals, Insurance and Parent Permission:

A form approved by the Missouri State High School Activities Association must be completed before a student is allowed to practice.  The Malden R-I School District considers the summer 25 days contact period as practice and therefore requires all athletes to complete a new physical prior to first summer practice or contest.  The form provided includes: a physical which must be completed by a physician, advanced nurse practitioner in written collaboration with a physician or a physician’s assistant in collaboration with a sponsoring physician; a certification by the parent that the student athlete has basic health insurance coverage (the school district does not provide insurance); and permission from the student athlete’s parents or guardians (all parents or guardians must sign).  No student will be allowed to participate until this form is completed in its entirety and has been verified by the athletic director.

Injuries or Illness during an Athletic Season:

The school district recognizes that there will be times when students become sick or injured during their athletic season and a doctor has prohibited the student from participation or practice.  As outlined in the practice requirement above, when a student is under a doctor’s care and is not allowed to practice or participate, they are excused.  In order to be excused the student should present a note from a physician, advanced nurse practitioner in written collaboration with a physician or a physician’s assistant in collaboration with a sponsoring physician to the high school principal who will in turn inform the head coach and athletic director.  The student will remain unable to practice or participate until the high school principal receives written clearance from a physician, advanced nurse practitioner in written collaboration with a physician or a physician’s assistant in collaboration with a sponsoring physician.  Once the high school principal has certified that the student may practice or participate, the high school principal will notify the head coach of the student’s release and a copy of all notes will be given to the athletic director to keep on file.

Unsportsmanlike Conduct:

It is the expectation of the Malden R-I School District that all representatives of the school, including coaches and students, will conduct themselves in a manner that promotes the district in a positive manner.  Failure on the part of coaches and students to conduct themselves properly will result in a minimum punishment as required by the Missouri State High School Activities Association.  Unsportsmanlike conduct that results in an ejection from a contest will carry a minimum penalty of missing the remainder of that contest plus a minimum one game suspension from the next contest. The administration reserves the right to administer additional punishment depending on the severity of the unsportsmanlike conduct.

Ethics:

The Malden R-I School District has developed a “Code of Ethics” which outlines the expectations for coaches and other activities sponsors.  All coaches and sponsors are required to sign a statement that they have read, understand and will abide by the “Code of Ethics”.

Waivers and Appeals:

The Malden R-I School District as a member of the Missouri State High School Activities Association, is obligated to follow the Constitution and Bylaw of the organization.  Therefore occasionally there will be issues concerning student eligibility where a waiver may be required for a student to be eligible to compete.  When that occurs, the high school principal in consultation with the athletic director will make a recommendation to the superintendent whether or not to file a waiver.  The superintendent will make the decision and will direct the high school principal whether or not to file the waiver and notify the parents of the district’s decision.  If a waiver is filed and subsequently denied by MSHSAA, the high school principal will notify the parents and the superintendent and a decision will be made whether or not to file an appeal.  Once a decision has been made to file a waiver, and any subsequent appeal, all correspondence between the district, MSHSAA and parents will be in writing and a copy of all correspondence will be maintained in the central office.  If a parent requests that the district file a waiver, the request will be made in writing and will be retained in the central office file. In all cases consideration will be given to what is in the best interest of the student involved and the likelihood that the waiver or appeal will be successful.  

Lettering in a Sport:

In order for a student athlete to letter, an athlete must be eligible to participate by meeting the conditioning standards outlined in this policy and must participate in at least 60% of the varsity contests in that particular sport.  In cases where the student is injured or becomes ill, the coach will determine if the student would have qualified for a letter, based on the 60% rule above, if the student had remained healthy all season.  In cases where the student, because of the position played on the team, would not qualify for a letter because the student cannot participate in every contest, the letter will be granted if the student participates in at least 60% of the contests that the student is eligible for. (example would be a pitcher who does not play a field position)  Any player dedicating him/herself for 4 years of participation in sport but does not meet playing time requirement will be issued a letter at the end of the fourth season.  Chevrons will be given for each year of participation.  No junior varsity letters or junior high letters will be given.

Student athletes will only receive one letter.  If an athlete participates in more than one sport, they will be given a pin for the additional sports to place on their jacket.  For example, a student who plays letters in football and then plays basketball the student will be given a letter for football (with a pin for football) and a pin to place on that letter for basketball.

Letters and chevrons will only be available in one green and gold color and will be provided by the school.  

At the end of each season, head coaches will forward a list of student athletes eligible to receive the letter to the athletic director.    If a student does NOT finish out the season as a member of the team, then he/she is ineligible to receive a letter for that sport.  The athletic director will keep a master list of all student athletes that have earned a letter.  Letters, pins and chevrons will then be forwarded to the coach, to award to the student athlete.

Conflicting Activities:

Due to the size of the Malden High School student body, even though the school will make every effort to schedule activities so that they do not conflict, it is possible that a student will have a conflict between athletics, or other school activities.  In all cases, the best interest of the student will be taken into consideration and coaches and activity sponsors will not exert undue pressure on a student who is in a position to make a decision between two activities.  The following are guidelines that will be followed when conflicts arise:

When a conflict arises as described above, the coach or activity sponsor will excuse the student and a missed practice will not count toward the practice requirements of this policy, except that if a practice is missed during the MSHSAA required pre-season conditioning period for a non MSHSAA sponsored practice or activity, the student must participate in the required number of conditioning practices to be eligible for the first contest.  In all cases an open line of communication will be established between coaches, activity sponsors, athletic director and administration to avoid conflicts to the extent possible and it is the responsibility of the high school principal to resolve conflicts if necessary.

Transportation:

The Malden R-I School District provides transportation to all events and requires that students ride school district transportation to all events.  If there is an unavoidable circumstance that makes it impossible for the student to ride school transportation to the event, the high school principal will arrange for transportation by a school employee or a parent only as the situation may warrant.  

Students may ride home from the event on school transportation, a school employee acting on behalf of the school or a parent.  If a student rides home from an away event with someone other than a parent, a parent must be present at the event to accept custody and control of the student.   In all cases if a student does not ride home on school district transportation, the parent must sign out the student with the head coach of the activity.  

Hazing:

Student hazing is expressly prohibited by Board of Education policy. For purposes of this policy, hazing is defined as willful conduct directed at another student, whether occurring on or off school property, for purposes of initiation or admission to any school-related activity or athletic team.  According to the Board of Education policy, any activity that a reasonable person believes would negatively impact the mental or physical health or safety of a student or put the student in a ridiculous, humiliating, stressful or disconcerting position for the purposes of initiation, affiliation, admission, membership or maintenance of membership in any group, class, organization, club or athletic team including, but not limited to, a grade level, student organization or school-sponsored activity. Hazing may occur even when all students involved are willing participants.  Students are encouraged to report any activity that meets the definition of hazing in this policy and Board of Education Policy.  Coaches will monitor student activity and report any incidents that would be considered hazing to the high school principal immediately.  Failure of coaches to report acts of hazing could result in disciplinary action and student athletes involved in acts of hazing will be subject to discipline according to Board of Education policy and possible suspension or removal from the team or squad.

Acknowledgement of Receipt

The Malden R-I School District Board of Education has adopted the attached Athletic Policy in order to provide direction, coordination, and information to parents, student athletes, coaches and administration.  My signature below certifies that I have read the Athletic Policy, which can be found on the Malden R-1 School website, Athletic Policy, and understand that the student athlete participating in a sport/cheerleading in grades 7-12 at Malden High School must follow all rules and regulations according to the attached Athletic Policy.  Please sign and return this certification to the head coach of the current sport.  This form must be signed each school year and will cover multiple sports/cheerleading during the school year.  

Student’s Name:  ____________________________________

                        Please Print

Student’s Signature:  __________________________________

Parent(s) Name: ________________________________________________________________

                        Please Print  

Parent(s) Signature: _____________________________________________________________

                        All Must Sign

Adopted October 19, 2010, Revised August 23, 2012, Second Revision October 16, 2012, Third Revision July 16, 2013.