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Section 131 – Athletic Codes

Athletic By-Laws
Sections 130-198

The Athletic Code and the Athletic Code for Coaches carry the force of rule.  Member schools, participant schools and/or covered school district personnel who violate any of the pro­visions of these codes will be subject to penalty.

  1. THE ATHLETIC CODE.  The general Athletic Code means to:
    • Play the game in the spirit of fairness and sportsmanship, observing all rules, both in letter and intent.
    • Coach and sponsor the teams and individuals without resorting to unethical tactics, trickery which attempts to skirt the rules, or any unfair tactic which detracts from sound educational principles.
    • Accept decisions of sports and school officials without pro­test, and without questioning their honesty or integrity, and extend protection and courtesy to sports officials from participants, school personnel, and spectators remembering that officials are guests.
    • Regard opponents as guests, putting clean play and good sportsmanship above victory at any cost.  Win without boast and lose without bitterness.  Victory is important, but the most important thing in sports is striving to excel and the positive feelings it fosters between those who play fair and have no excuse when they lose.  The development of re-creative aspects and positive human relations should be stressed in all competition.
    • Provide information or evidence as soon as possible regarding eligibility of any contestant or school to the local administration, then to the proper district executive committee.  To withhold infor­mation is considered dishonor­able and contrary to good sportsmanship.  Schools guilty of violating this section may be subject to penalty as described in Sections 23 and  25 including disqualification from district honors in the germane activity.  Covered school district personnel guilty of violating this sec­tion may be subject to the range of penalties as describ­ed in Sections 23 and 25.
    • Not provide inducement for athletic purposes.  Inducement means to encourage a student to change schools for the purpose of participating in TAPPS activities by offering the student or the student’s parent cash, waiver of tuition, board or lodging, tran­sportation, a job, or other valuable consideration to induce the student to enroll in a participant school.
    • Avoid tampering with students whether the student is enrolled in a TAPPS or other school.
  2. THE ATHLETIC CODE FOR COACHES.  The code for athletic sponsors includes the principles described in Subsection 131 and the purposes listed in Section 130.  Further, the coach’s code includes:
    • Being aware of, understanding, and following all rules governing the competition for which the coach is responsible.
    • Informing one’s immediate supervisor in writing the next school day after a contest if ejected from that contest for unsportsmanlike actions, or, in football, if given two 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalties during one contest, knowing that such conduct requires automatic penalty
    • Abstaining from removing team from contest in protest.
    • Treating athletes based on what is best for the education, general welfare, and health of the student.
    • Professional loyalty to other coaches.
    • Adhering to in season and out of season practice reg­ulations.
    • Adhering to policies which do not force athletes to special­ize or restrict them from participation in other sports.
    • Allowing students to participate in one school sport with­out requiring, as a prereq­uisite, participation in an­other school sport.
    • Abstaining from any practice which would bring financial gain to the coach by using a student’s participation in a camp, clinic, league, or other non-school athletic event, such as a rebate for each player sent to a particular camp or from each player using a particular product.  Coaches shall not charge a fee for private instruction to student athletes during the school year.  The restriction on charging fees for private instruction applies only to those students who are:
      • in grades 9-12;
      • from the coach’s school; and
      • participating in the sport for which the coach is responsible.
    • Abstaining from any practice that makes a student feel pressured to participate in non-school activities.
    • Avoiding any coaching practice which would endanger the wel­fare or safety of any player.
    • Emphasizing the academic pro­gress of all participants by a regular, documented check of their academic standing, both in season and out of season.
    • Scheduling games and practices to avoid unnecessary loss of study or class time.
    • Utilizing the best and most current teaching, coaching, and training methods through affiliation with professional associations and publications.
    • Abstaining from any practice that solicits teachers to modify a participant student’s grade for eligibility purposes.
    • Avoiding any actions that encourage, condone, or tolerate the use of performance enhanc­ing drugs by any student ath­lete.
    • Emphasizing a chemical aware­ness program that informs and educates students of the damaging effects of anabolic steroids and other illegal drugs.
    • Disclosing to opposing schools any known conflict of interest with an assigned sports offi­cial prior to a contest.
    • All coaches with less than five (5) years coaching experience in either public or private schools must complete the NFHS Fundamentals of Coaching course prior to coaching at a TAPPS member school. See Section 138.
    • Individuals who are under suspension or are ineligible to coach in recognized athletic leagues (TAPPS, UIL, NCAA, etc.) are not eligible to participate in TAPPS as Athletic Director, Coach, Assistant Coach or other such capacity, whether paid or unpaid for these services.