Schools Approve 6th-Grade Membership

December 7, 2015

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

By a vote of 561 in favor and 87 opposed, the membership of the Michigan High School Athletic Association has approved an amendment to the MHSAA Constitution that for the first time in 2016-17 will permit schools to join the MHSAA at the 6th-grade level.

Currently, MHSAA membership is open to schools at the 7th- and 8th-grade level as junior high/middle schools and at the 9th through 12th grades at the high school level. The MHSAA’s total membership of 1,458 schools consists at this time of 705 junior high/middle schools and 753 high schools.

The revision in the MHSAA Constitution does not require school districts to become member schools at the junior high/middle school level and does not require school districts to sponsor any interscholastic 6th-grade programs. If a school district’s MHSAA Membership Resolution lists a junior high/middle school as an MHSAA member school, and if the school sponsors a 6th-grade team in any sport or permits a 6th-grade student to participate with 7th- and/or 8th-grade students in any sport, then all MHSAA Regulations apply to all 6th-graders in all sports involving 6th-graders on teams sponsored by that school. If the school does not allow any 6th-graders to participate in a sport, MHSAA rules do not apply in that sport.

“There are a variety of reasons school districts so overwhelmingly supported this change,” MHSAA Executive Director John E. “Jack” Roberts said. “Some wanted the change so they could better market school sports to younger students. Some districts have their 6th-graders in the same buildings and even classrooms with 7th- and 8th-graders and see the natural fit. Some of our smaller junior high/middle schools need 6th-graders to fill out teams.”

MHSAA services, including catastrophic accident medical insurance and concussion care gap insurance, will be provided without charge for 6th-graders whose districts secure MHSAA membership, beginning with the 2016-17 school year.

The MHSAA is a private, not-for-profit corporation of voluntary membership by more than 1,400 public and private senior high schools and junior high/middle schools which exists to develop common rules for athletic eligibility and competition. No government funds or tax dollars support the MHSAA, which was the first such association nationally to not accept membership dues or tournament entry fees from schools. Member schools which enforce these rules are permitted to participate in MHSAA tournaments, which attract more than 1.4 million spectators each year.

MHSAA Accepting Student Advisory Council Applications for Class of 2026

By Geoff Kimmerly senior editor

April 11, 2024

The Michigan High School Athletic Association is seeking student-athletes to become members of its Student Advisory Council beginning with the 2024-25 school year.

Four boys and four girls from the Class of 2026 will be selected to two-year terms, and will meet on matters related to maintaining and promoting a proper perspective and sensible scope for high school sports in Michigan. Eight members from the Class of 2025 already are serving on the Council, while eight members from the Class of 2024 are leaving the Council this spring.

To be eligible for the committee, candidates must be a member of the Class of 2026, complete the official application including answering the three short-answer questions, submit a letter of recommendation from a school administrator, have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) and be available for all scheduled meetings.

In addition, candidates should show a history of leadership on athletic teams as well as with other extracurricular activities, community service projects, or in the workplace; and show an understanding of the role of school sports and have ideas for promoting a proper perspective for educational athletics.

Applications are due to the MHSAA by 4:30 p.m. on April 22. Applications can be downloaded from the Student Advisory Council page of the MHSAA Website and must be returned via e-mail, fax or any mail delivery service

The Student Advisory Council meets six times each school year, and once more for a 24-hour leadership camp. In addition to assisting in the promotion of the educational value of interscholastic athletics, the Council discusses issues dealing with the 4 S’s of educational athletics: scholarship, sportsmanship, safety (including health and nutrition) and the sensible scope of athletic programs. A fifth S – student leadership – is also a common topic. Members contribute to the planning of Sportsmanship Summits, Captains Clinics and other student leadership events, and assist with medal ceremonies at MHSAA championship events.

Newly-chosen members will join the following from the Class of 2025: Cale Bell, Sault Ste. Marie; Drew Cady, Oxford; Macy Jenkins, Milford; Isaiah Kabban, Harbor Beach; Ella Knudsen, Leland; Kaylee Kranz, Clinton; Joey Spada, Kalamazoo Central; and Aynalem Zoet, Grandville Calvin Christian.

The eight new members of the Student Advisory Council will be notified by May 3. The 2024-25 meetings are tentatively scheduled for Aug. 25, Oct. 6, Dec. 8, Feb. 16 and April 27, in addition to the leadership camp June 18-19 and with a May 2025 meeting still to be scheduled.  Meetings will take place at the MHSAA Office in East Lansing, For additional information, contact Andy Frushour at the MHSAA at (517) 332-5046 or [email protected].