By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
The Michigan High School Athletic Association is accepting registrations by mail and online for game officials for the 2014-15 school year and hopes to continue building on a program started in 2012 and aimed at recruiting new officials from high schools’ current graduating classes.
The MHSAA again has provided each member high school with two complimentary officials registrations to be awarded to graduating seniors designated by their athletic directors as having the skills and interest in continuing their involvement in MHSAA athletics through officiating. Over the last two years, 41 graduates took advantage of this opportunity to register free of charge.
High school seniors selected do not have to pay registration fees for the next school year and receive assistance from MHSAA staff in connecting with local officials’ associations and receiving training opportunities. Graduates who registered during the first two years of the program came from the following schools: Adrian Lenawee Christian, Brimley, Calumet, Carleton Airport, Coleman, Dearborn, Detroit International Academy, Detroit Aisha Shule-W.E.B. Du Bois Prep Academy, Detroit Southwestern, Engadine, Fenton, Grand Haven, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett, Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse, Houghton Lake, Imlay City, Ishpeming Westwood, Jonesville, Kalamazoo Loy Norrix, Lowell, Mackinaw City, Madison Heights Lamphere, Marquette, Mayville, Michigan Center, Negaunee, New Boston Huron, New Haven Anchor Bay, Owendale-Gagetown, Owosso, Oxford, Rogers City, St. Ignace, Ubly, Waldron, Watervliet and West Branch Ogemaw Heights.
For other new and returning officials, those who register online again will receive a $5 discount off their processing fees. A $12 fee is charged for each sport in which an official wishes to register, and the online processing fee is $30. Officials submitting registration forms by mail or on a walk-up basis will incur a $35 processing fee. Officials registered in 2013-14 will be assessed a late fee of $30 for registration after July 31. The processing fee includes liability insurance coverage up to $1 million for officials while working contests involving MHSAA schools.
Online registration can be accessed by clicking “Officials” on the Home Page of the MHSAA Website. Forms also are available online that can be printed and submitted by traditional mail or hand delivery to the MHSAA Office. More information about officials registration may be obtained by contacting the MHSAA at 1661 Ramblewood Drive, East Lansing, MI, 48823, by phone at (517) 332-5046 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is an officials' registration test for first-time officials and officials who were not registered during the past school year. The test consists of 45 questions derived from the MHSAA Officials Guidebook, which also is available on the Officials page of the MHSAA Website. Additional 50-question exams must be taken by those registering for football or basketball for the first time or those who were not registered for those sports during the previous school year. Manuals for both sports also are available on the Officials page.