Updated May 30, 2014
Understanding the OHSAA
The OHSAA receives more
inquiries about eligibility in terms of the transfer bylaw than
any other aspect of eligibility.
The basic transfer bylaw is quite simple. If
a student transfers at any time after the fifth day of the studentís
ninth grade year or after having established eligibility by playing in a
contest (scrimmage, preview/jamboree, Foundation game or regular
season/tournament contests) until the one year anniversary of the date
or enrollment in the school to which the student transferred, the
student shall be ineligible for all contests (including all scrimmages,
preview/jamboree/Foundation game) until after the first 50% of the
maximum allowable regular season contests in those sports in which the
student participated during the twelve months immediately preceding the
transfer have been competed.
Note #1 ĖFor the purposes of this bylaw, a student is considered to have
participated in a sport if he/she has entered, if for only one play, a
scrimmage or contests at any level of competition/contests (e.g.
freshman, junior varsity and varsity).
Note #2 Ė If a student transfers during the season of a sport in which
he or she has participated, and Bylaw 4-7-3 requires that the student is
ineligible for participation in the remainder of the contests in that
sports season, at the commencement of that sport during the next school
year, the student remains ineligible for the pre-season contests
(scrimmages, preview/jamboree, Foundation game) and up to 50% of the
regular season contests in that sport. The total number of regular
season contests for which the student will be ineligible is a function
of the number of regular season contests in which he or she was
ineligible in accordance with 4-7-3.
In the event of a student transfer, no ruling is required from the
Commissionerís Office, and no paperwork is necessary if that studentís
transfer does not meet an exception to the transfer bylaw or if the
student did not participate in any OHSAA recognized sport in the
previous 12 months. Understanding that basic rule is fundamental to
dealing with transfer students.
Of course, in our society today, students do indeed change schools for
various reasons. The member schools have identified a few transfer
scenarios that they recognize should be exempted from the general
transfer bylaw. To deal with those limited scenarios our member schools
have adopted seven (7) exceptions, one of which MAY apply to a student
who changes high schools. The use of the word MAY is instructive since
not all transfer students can meet one of these exceptions and for each
of these exceptions (unless no ruling is required as in exception 3),
the transfer student is INELIGIBLE until ruled eligible by the
Commissionerís Office. For a student to avail herself/himself of one of
these exceptions, action on the part of the member school administrator
as well as the OHSAA staff is required. The purpose of this series on
the Transfer Bylaw is to provide guidance as to the required action on
each of the exceptions, if applicable.
Exception 1 - Parents' Bona Fide Move into a New Public School District
Exception 2 - Change of Legal Custody
Exception 3 - School Closes/Discontinues Program After Grade 9 or
Exception 4 - Self-Supporting Student
Bylaw 4-7-2, Exception 5 -
A student transferred to the State School for the Blind or State School
for the Deaf shall be eligible upon enrollment.
Bylaw 4-7-2, Exception
6 - New Construction - Home Not Ready for Habitation
Bylaw 4-7-2, Exception
Bylaw 4-7-4 - Intra-District/System Transfer
Bylaw 4-7-6 - Intra-District Transfer
Bylaw 4-7-7 - Intra-System Transfer
List of Sample Situations - Change in Educational Programs
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