WIAA members to vote on pair of significant amendments this month

STEVENS POINT — After years of debate and consideration, the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) is finally giving its member schools the opportunity to vote on an enrollment multiplier that would apply to all non-public school districts’ enrollment figures for tournament placement in all sports.

 The enrollment multipler along with another that would remove the WIAA’s power to form and realign conferences are two of the most significant amendments to the WIAA Constitution proposed in years. Both will be up for a vote at the annual meeting next Wednesday, April 16 in Stevens Point.

The WIAA Board of Control, at its March meeting, reviewed and approved sending both items along with a number of other potential amendments to the Constitution, Bylaws and Rules Eligibilty for votes at the annual meeting.

A petition by a segment of member schools that would establish a 1.65 enrollment multiplier applicable to the enrollments of all private, religious and independent schools in the WIAA membership for tournament placement. The second significant ammendment would remove the authority and responsibility for conference formation and realignment from the Board of Control and return that responsibility back to the membership and local control. If approved, member schools would be responsible for their own conference affiliations.

A pair of proposals to amend the membership’s Rules of Eligibility will be voted on by the membership. The first requires football programs to follow the fall acclimatization policy during the school’s summertime unrestricted contact dates. The second proposed amendment will provide the sport of soccer with the same unlimited nonschool contact dates that are afforded baseball, cross country, golf, gymnastics, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, track and field, and wrestling.

One proposed amendment to the Bylaws would require all coaches, including assistants, to attend the sport rules meeting or view the rules video if they are offered specific to the sport they coach. The current language requires only the head coach to attend a rules meeting or view the video.

In addition, the membership will vote on six editorial changes to the text in the Constitution, Bylaws and Rules of Eligibility. Editorial changes simply clarify existing rules without changing the interpretation of the rule, unless that change in interpretation has been authorized by the Board of Control. For a complete list of amendments and editorial changes go to:  http://www.wiaawi.org/Portals/0/PDF/2014Constitutional.pdf

In other action items, the Board approved routine fund and financial statements, as well as fall cooperative team requests for 2014 and 2015.

The Board received staff reports on the Board of Control and Advisory Council elections, preliminary results of a middle-level survey, current marketing initiatives and the tentative 2014 Annual Meeting agenda. It also received an update from the liaison for the Department of Public Instruction.

The membership of the WIAA oversees interscholastic athletic programs for 505 senior high schools and 61 junior high/middle level schools in its membership. It will sponsor 25 championship tournament series in 2013-14. For more information, visit the WIAA website at www.wiaawi.org or contact the WIAA office at (715) 344-8580.