St. Andrew's Athletic Department
DeWayne Cupples, Athletics Director
370 Old Agency Rd.
Ridgeland, MS 39157
Phone: (601) 853-6000
Fax: (601) 853-6001
According to the Mississippi High School Activities Association (MHSAA) Handbook, eligibility rules require each student participating in MHSAA sanctioned competitions to make “satisfactory progress toward graduation.” Each school district determines the requirements for “satisfactory progress toward graduation” through its graduation requirements. Each school district must interpret this according to its requirements. In situations which require “judgment,” schools are directed to “interpret the rules for the benefit of the students.”
To be academically eligible for either MHSAA sanctioned or school-sponsored activities (such as but not limited to Mock Trial, Quiz Bowl, Lacrosse, theatrical productions, and optional day trips), the following guidelines will be followed:
Upper School Participation
St. Andrew’s Upper School students must maintain a grade point average of at least a 2.0 using the St. Andrew’s grading scale. (Ninth grade students must have been promoted to ninth grade with at least a 2.0 GPA.) Grades will be assessed at the conclusion of the first semester using the semester averages of all the courses the student is taking. Students who do not have a 2.0 average for the first semester will be ineligible for the second semester.
At the end of the school year, each student’s grade point average for the year will be assessed. This assessment will reflect the GPA for the entire year using the final grade for each course. If the student does not have a grade point average of at least 2.0, (s)he will become ineligible for the fall semester. A student may become eligible for the second semester only once during his or her upper school years after having been deemed ineligible at the end of the previous year. Summer remediation may be achieved according to the school’s academic policy as stated in this handbook.
Seventh And Eighth Grade Participation At The Upper School Level
Students in the seventh and eighth grade for fall eligibility must: have been promoted; have passed the four core courses (English, history, math, and science); and the average of those four core courses must be a 2.0 or above. Students who do not have a 2.0 average for the first semester will be ineligible for the second semester.
SEVENTH AND EIGHTH GRADE PARTICIPATION AT THE MIDDLE SCHOOL LEVEL:
Students in the seventh and eighth grade for fall eligibility must: have been promoted; have passed any four core courses (English, history, math, science, or foreign language) with a grade point average of 2.0 or above. The same guidelines apply at the end of first semester for eligibility in the second semester.
St. Andrew’s Ability To Apply Additional Judgment
Even though a student may have met the minimum requirements for MHSAA eligibility, it is the responsibility and prerogative of the coaches, sponsors, advisors, faculty, and administrators who work with the student to determine collaboratively if an additional restriction or limitation of the student’s activities should be implemented. If there is not agreement as to the best way to proceed that will benefit both the student and the school, the division head has the authority to decide the proper course of action. Additional requirements may include but are not limited to:
- Required tutorials
- Required study halls, including F1 or F2
- Loss of senior privileges
- Loss of participation in activities
In order to participate in team practices or competitions, an athlete must:
- have been cleared for eligibility by the athletic office.
- have been in attendance for classes for at least one-half of the day of practice or game.
Athletes may be permitted to participate on more than one sport per season with the mutual agreement of the two coaches concerned. Upon agreement of the coaches involved, the athlete will declare a primary sport for that season which will take precedence over the other sports in cases of conflict. The coach of the primary sport, after discussion with the athlete, will have the right to decide on the release from practices or games for participation in the other sport(s).
Having joined one athletic team, an athlete may not resign from that team in order to join another, or to begin practice for a sport to be held in the ensuing season, until the first season has been completed.
A student may not participate in try-outs or pre-season practices for another sport while a member of an in-season sports team. No student will be denied the right to try-outs or participation because of his/her involvement with another team. Students reporting late for try-outs or practices for this reason will be afforded the same number of try-out practices as other participants prior to any decision regarding his/her team membership.
Any eligible Upper School student may participate on a varsity sports team if:
- there is no sub-varsity team provided in that sport, OR
- (s)he is selected for varsity membership by the varsity head coach.
Generally, a seventh or eighth grade student may NOT participate on a varsity sport if:
- there is a middle school team provided in that sport, OR
- there is no middle school team, but there is a sub-varsity team provided.
A seventh grade student may participate ONLY in the following varsity sports, if the requirements for participation above are satisfied: Baseball, Cross Country, Golf, Tennis, Track, Softball, Swimming, Soccer, Volleyball.
In rare instances, with the concurrence of the school administration, the Athletic Director, the student and his/her parents, middle school seventh or eighth grade students of exceptional talents may be permitted to play at a higher level of competition.
A middle school student below the seventh grade level is not permitted to participate on any St. Andrew’s team above the sixth grade level.
Membership on or participation in extra-scholastic sports (teams outside the school athletic program) is discouraged for members of school teams in season. The scholastic and school athletic demands on a St. Andrew’s athlete’s time are great; additional outside activities serve only to detract from a student’s physical and academic development. Students should be careful not to over-extend themselves in their daily activities.
In accordance with MHSAA regulations, a student may not participate on an outside team on which St. Andrew's students comprise more than 50% of the number of starting positions in that sport; that is, a baseball team may have no more than four St. Andrew's students, or a basketball team may have no more than two Saints players.
St. Andrew’s sports facilities are for the use and enjoyment of the school community under the following guidelines:
- Competing, in-season sports teams shall have first priority in the use of practice and competition areas.
- Varsity teams shall have priority over sub-varsity teams in the scheduling and use of game fields or courts.
- The recreational use of sports facilities by students and faculty is permitted only under the direct supervision of a member of the athletic department.
- The use of St. Andrew’s sports facilities by groups not affiliated with St. Andrew’s and the Athletic Department is permitted only in exceptional circumstances and only with the written approval of the school administration and the Athletic Director.
Game-day team attire at St. Andrew’s is a recognized and valued tradition. Student athletes represent the school proudly in the classroom, as well as in competition. In order to build school spirit and recognize the competition student athletes will be participating in that day, St. Andrew’s has prepared the following dress code for student game-day attire.
Student athletes will purchase a St. Andrew’s team polo shirt. The team polo shirt will have the school’s athletic logo known as “Football logotype” in compliance with the school’s Graphic Standards Guide. The coach of each team will determine the one color that all team members will wear: blue, white, or grey. On game days, student athletes will wear their St. Andrew’s team polo shirt and appropriate bottoms as determined by the uniform/dress code of their respective division. In lieu of the team polo shirt, cheerleaders and dance team members may wear their cheer/dance team uniforms, and football players may wear a plain white t-shirt underneath their jerseys. In the event of an away game, football players will change into their team polo shirt prior to departing for the away game.
St. Andrew’s team warm-up jackets may be worn, but if worn unzipped, student athletes must wear their team polo shirt underneath the jacket. No warm-up bottoms are allowed during the academic school day.
All St. Andrew’s sports teams, whether varsity, sub-varsity or club-level, shall adhere to the following restrictions on practices and games. Exceptions due to unusual circumstances may be permitted upon written approval of the Athletic Director.
- There will be no practices, games, competitions, meetings, or organized gatherings on Sundays.
- Practices are limited to the length of time permitted under MHSAA rules and may not extend beyond 7:30 PM. Special night practices may be permitted on written authorization by the Athletic Director.
- Practices may not begin earlier than one-half hour after the end of the extra help period during the regular school day.
- Out-of-season sports may practice no sooner than the beginning dates published by the MHSAA. Off-season conditioning and weight training may be conducted only under strict adherence to MHSAA rules.
- Practices may be scheduled for holiday periods for in-season teams for weekdays or Saturdays. Consideration must be made for athletes’ family commitments; no athlete will be penalized for absence during these practices due to family activities. There shall be no practices or games scheduled on Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, Easter, or other religious holidays observed by the school. Athletes may be excused from practices for other religious holidays as determined by their faith.
- All home games, matches, and competitions for varsity, sub-varsity, and middle school teams will be held, whenever possible, on the school’s north campus.
- No games, practices, or exhibitions may be scheduled with school teams who are not approved or sanctioned by the MHSAA.
- No competitions will be scheduled for the day prior to and days of exams.
- All varsity games, matches, and competitions involving another school must have an official contract signed by the Principal or Athletic Director of the opposing school. Contracts are not required for tournaments or jamborees.
- Teams may not participate in more games per week held on the day preceding a school day than permitted by the MHSAA rules. Exceptions may be made for tournaments or state play-off series competitions.
- Game competitions should be scheduled to avoid early dismissal of team members from academic classes. Where special circumstances arise, as in the case of state play-off series, a team roster will be provided to the school faculty, and team members will secure a completed Planned Absence Work Form as described in the Parent and Student Handbook.
- Teams and team members will travel to and from competitions in school or school-arranged transportation. Athletes may, upon permission of the coach, be transported to or from a contest with their parents under special, extenuating circumstances. Under no circumstances are students allowed to drive or ride with anyone other than parents to or from an athletic contest.
- Special permission for over-night game competition during the sports season must be obtained in writing from the appropriate school Unit Head and the Athletic Director. In no instance will more than one such trip be permitted during a sports season. (The Athletic Director will secure permission from the MHSAA for out-of-state competitions.)
- For trips requiring early dismissal and/or over-night stays, only coaches, playing team members, cheerleaders, and sponsors will be permitted to participate. Other students, spectators, “extra” or ancillary personnel must adhere to school policies for absences as described in the Parent and Student Handbook.