MSHSAA Expands Participation Eligibility, Pushes Back Classification Announcement in Latest Press Release

(Farmington) MSHSAA released a statement on Wednesday announcing changes to its by-laws for the upcoming 2020-2021 school year.

The most significant change is that schools will now have the opportunity to participate in sports and activities even if the school begins the year with, or transitions entirely to, virtual instruction – provided they are following all health department requirements and phases.

Decisions on whether or not to offer sports and activities – in addition to what the criteria will be in order to earn the privilege to represent the school in interscholastic competition – will lie solely with each individual school and their local health department recommendations.

Another change was made to the by-law that deals with postseason eligibility.

The standard rule states, “To be eligible [to participate in postseason play] a school must have competed in at least half of the number of contests permitted under the by-law pertaining to that particular sport.”

The MSHSAA statement says, “Given the sudden changes that may occur during the season, the Board voted to grant relief of this section of the by-law to allow teams that complete less than half of their scheduled contests to remain eligible for the postseason in their sport or activity.”

The final change of note pertains to the release date of the classification and district assignments for the fall seasons.

Originally scheduled to be released on Friday, August 21st, the assignments will now be released on Friday, September 18th.

Additionally, member schools will now have until September 11th to notify MSHSAA if they have a sport that will not be able to participate in the postseason, thus removing them from the classification process for that specific sport.

High school sports and activities in Missouri are eligible to begin participating in events beginning on Friday, August 28th.

Read the MSHSAA statement here: MSHSAA Amends By-Laws for 2020-2021