Two factors that have come about in the last couple of years are killing collegiate sports, say growing numbers of commentators, experts, and even coaches. One of them could potentially be voted on by the WIAA next spring.

WIAA postpones potential vote until probably next spring, but...

According to information from The Chronicle Online (Chehalis-Centralia WA) and the WIAA (Washington Interscholastic Activities Association), there has been some growing pressure from a few legislators and other entities to allow WA HS athletes to transfer freely during their high school careers.

Currently, the NCAA now allows athletes to transfer and not have to sit out the following season in their chosen sport(s). This was a big departure from the rules originally there since day one. It also doesn't prohibit the number of transfers anymore.

According to The Chronicle:

"In recent weeks, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) has been considering a new amendment to the high school athletics transfer rule which would allow student-athletes to transfer to other schools freely during their high school careers.

While a vote this spring was a possibility at one point, the WIAA instead is opting for more time and won't vote until next spring at the earliest. Discussions around changes to the current transfer rules remain ongoing."

Some of the legislative pressure came from Olympia, including members of the Senate Early Learning and K-12 Education Committee. No specific reasons for possibly changing some of the WIAA rules were given, but many coaches are against the idea.

   Current rules allow 1 transfer prior to freshman year.

Current rules allow a WA HS student to transfer to a school, even if it is out of their district, prior to their freshman year, but then they have to stay there. Unless a student can verify their physical home address where they reside is in the boundaries of another school, they can't just transfer.

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If a student, for example, were to leave Kennewick HS for Kamiakin or Southridge, and their proven home address does not change, they must forfeit or sit out the following season of their chosen sport(s). There are some hardship exceptions to this rule that can be appealed, but that is not done on a widespread basis.

Some coaches who spoke to The Chronicle have seen transfer portal legislation floating around in other states and they are wary of it. They say it would further damage athletic equality which is already suffering in some areas of the state.

And, they say the looming presence of the NCAA's Name Image Likeness, or NIL, which allows 'amateur' collegiate athletics to pursue their own financial endorsement deals, would further compromise HS sports.

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Gallery Credit: Sophia Crisafulli



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