Raising Expectations for Managing Heat and Humidity

February 19, 2013

The MHSAA Representative Council is scheduled to vote on March 22, 2013, to approve a “Model Policy for Managing Heat and Humidity” that would appear in the 2013-14 MHSAA Handbook.

The policy, patterned after a mandatory policy of the Kentucky High School Athletic Association, requires that temperature and humidity readings be taken at the site of activities 30 minutes before the start of the practice or competition and again 60 minutes after the start of that activity.  The readings must be recorded in writing and kept in the files of school administration.  Inexpensive devices may be used that automatically calculate the “heat index.”

If the heat index is below 95 degrees, only normal precautions are required.  However, readings of 95 to 99 degrees and then 100 to 104 degrees require additional precautions; and all activity must be postponed or suspended if the heat index climbs above 104 degrees.

When the air temperature is below 80 degrees, there is no combination of heat and humidity that will result in need to curtail activity.

This is being proposed as a model policy for 2013-14.  The MHSAA will monitor school districts’ acceptance of this policy or adoption of similar policies before considering a mandate of this or similar policies.

The model policy will be mandatory for MHSAA tournaments. 

Cheering for Sportsmanship

July 31, 2018

(This blog first appeared on MHSAA.com on January 8, 2013.)

I try to start each new school year at the Michigan Interscholastic Press Association summer camp at Michigan State University. I talk briefly about who the MHSAA is and what it does; and then two or three dozen high school newspaper editors and writers ask me questions; and in doing so, they give me clues to what’s going on in our schools and what’s important to our students.

Several years ago, when I opened the session to questions, one young man asked: “Mr. Roberts, what’s your job?” I paused, and then said, “I guess I’m the head cheerleader for high school sports in Michigan.”

So then this precocious student asked: “Okay, what do you cheer for?”  With a briefer pause, this is some of what I said:

  • I cheer for sportsmanship that’s not merely good, but great.

  • I cheer for sportsmanship, not gamesmanship.

  • I cheer for playing by the rules, both the letter and the spirit.

  • I cheer for maximum effort to try to win each and every contest.

  • I don’t cheer for winning at any cost; I do cheer for learning at every opportunity.

  • I cheer for losing with grace and for winning with even greater grace, with humility and modesty.

  • I cheer for the lessons of victory and the even greater lessons of defeat.