Fair Play Policy
Good sportsmanship is viewed by the Manitoba High Schools Athletic Association as a commitment to fair play, ethical behavior and integrity. In perception and practice, sportsmanship is defined as those qualities, which are characterized by generosity and genuine concern for others. The ideals of sportsmanship apply equally to all athletic disciplines. Individuals, regardless of their role, are expected to be aware of their influence on the behavior of others and model good sportsmanship.
The MHSAA has identified nine groups within the high school community that are responsible for conducting themselves in a sportsmanlike manner. Following are expectations of each group.
Expectations of Coaches
- Always set a good example for participants and fans to follow, exemplifying the highest moral and ethical behavior.
- Instruct participants in proper sportsmanship expectations and demand that they make sportsmanship and ethics the No. 1 priority.
- Respect judgment of officials, abide by rules of the event, and display no behavior that could incite fans.
- Treat opposing coaches, administrators, participants and fans with respect. Shake hands with officials and opposing coach in public.
- Develop and enforce penalties for participants who do not abide by sportsmanship standards.
Expectations of Student/Athletes
- Treat opponents with respect: shake hands prior to and after contests.
- Respect judgment of officials, abide by rules of the event and display no behavior that could incite fans.
- Cooperate with officials, coaches and fellow participants to conduct a fair competition.
- Accept seriously the responsibility and privilege of representing school and community; display positive public action at all times.
- Live up to high standard of sportsmanship established by coach.
Expectations of Parents, Students and Other Fans
- Realize that a ticket is a privilege to observe a contest and support high school athletics, NOT a license to verbally assault others or to be generally obnoxious.
- Respect decisions made by game officials.
- Be an exemplary role model by positively supporting teams in every manner possible, including content of cheers and signs.
- Respect fans, coaches and participants.
- Maintain enthusiasm and composure
- Recognize outstanding performances on either side of the playing court, field, or arena.
Expectations of Media
- Promote ideals and fundamentals of good sportsmanship.
- Report acts of sportsmanlike behavior without giving undue publicity to unsportsmanlike behavior.
- Refrain from making negative comments toward participants, coaches or officials.
- Recognize efforts of all who participate in the contest.
Expectations of Officials
- Accept role in an unassuming manner. Showboating and over officiating are not acceptable.
- Maintain confidence and poise, controlling contest from start to finish.
- Know rules thoroughly and abide by established Code of Ethics.
- Publicly shake hands with coaches of both teams before contest.
- Never exhibit emotions or argue with participants and coaches when enforcing rules.
Expectations of School Administrators
- Develop a program for teaching and promoting the ideals and fundamentals of good sportsmanship within the school, zone, and province.
- Provide appropriate supervisory personnel for each interscholastic event.
- Support participants, coaches, and fans who teach and display good sportsmanship.
- Recognize exemplary behavior and actively discourage undesirable conduct by participants, coaches and fans.
- Attend events whenever possible.
Expectations of Provincial Association Staff (MHSAA)
- Provide leadership and information to member schools.
- Act as a liaison to other educational associations within the province.
- Use provincial visibility to actively promote good sportsmanship.
Expectations of School Boards
- Adopt policies that promote ideals of good sportsmanship, ethics and integrity.
- Serve as a positive role model and expect the same from, parents, fans, participants, coaches and other school personnel.
- Support participants, coaches, school administrators and fans who display good sportsmanship.
- Recognize the value of school activities as a vital part of education.
- Attend and enjoy school activities.
Expectations of Public-Address Announcers
- Treat visiting and home teams comparably.
- Consistently display neutrality during contest.
- Offer no personal comments or criticism of players, officials or coaches.
- Use P. A. announcements available through the MHSAA.
Suggestions For Admission Gate Display
In the game or in the stands, BE A GOOD SPORT.
At today’s contest, BE A FAN, NOT A FANATIC.
- Applaud during introduction of players, coaches, and officials.
- Players shaking hands with opponent who fouls out while both sets of fans recognize player’s performance with applause.
- Accept all decisions of officials.
- Cheerleaders lead fans in positive school yells in positive manner.
- Handshakes between participants and coaches at end of game, regardless of outcome.
- Treat competition as a game, not a war.
- Coaches, players search out opposing participants to recognize them for outstanding performance or coaching.
- Applause at end of contest for performances of all participants.
- Everyone showing concern for injured player, regardless of team.
- Encourage surrounding people to display only sportsmanlike conduct.
- During the National anthem, students, participants and fans should remove any hats, face the flag, and remain still until the end of the anthem.
- Yelling or waving arms during opponent’s free-throw attempt.
- Disrespectful or derogatory yells, chants, songs or gestures.
- Booing or heckling an official’s decision.
- Criticizing officials in any way; displays of temper with an official’s call.
- Yells that antagonizes opponents.
- Refusing to shake hands or give recognition for good performances.
- Blaming loss of game on officials, coaches or participants.
- Laughing or name-calling to distract an opponent.
- Use of profanity or displays of anger that draw attention away from the game or activity.
- Doing own yells instead of following lead of cheerleaders.
- Using social media in a negative fashion.
Ways To Promote Good Sportsmanship
- Develop code of conduct and enforce it.
- Develop sportsmanship awards program and honor those individuals who exhibit outstanding sportsmanship, ethics and integrity.
- Hold pre-season meeting and assemblies before games to encourage students to exhibit proper conduct.
- Work with local radio and television stations to air public-service announcements on sportsmanship.
- Display message on good sportsmanship throughout school hallways and in gymnasium or on playing field.
- Have coaches, players and administrators speak to local clubs and organizations to stress need for good sportsmanship in the community.
- Conduct clinics for parents and others to discuss playing rules, ethics and good sportsmanship.
- Formulate a committee to work toward improvement of conduct at contests and activities.