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for Northland Secondary School Events

                      To be ratified and adopted February 2020
All Northland Secondary Schools (NSSs) affiliated to the Northland Secondary
Schools Sports Association (NSSSA) are guided by the policies and guidelines found
below. Highlighted sections indicate changes from 2019.

The Northland Secondary Schools Sports Council (NSSSC) accepts the importance of
school sports competition. It is an essential part of the school year. Nevertheless,
every attempt should be made to schedule school sports events so that academic
programmes are not compromised.

1.     Approval of Events

Approval of an event will ensure that it meets all the requirements set down by the

(a)   To provide a safe environment in which students can participate.
(b)   To ensure that Secondary School sporting event administrators provide a fair
      and equitable opportunity for school teams to be selected to compete at a
      competitive level that is appropriate to their performance in that year.
(b)   To ensure that all students have the opportunity to participate in all events
      whether local, zonal or regional.
(c)   To ensure that the event is held under the rules of the sport and is organised
      to a high standard.

      For any event to be included on the NSSSA Events Calendar there must be a
      NSSSA Coordination and Planning document completed and supplied to the
      Regional Sports Director (RSD) or Regional Sports Director Assistant (RSDA)
      by June 30 in the year prior to the event.
      The Coordination and Planning document will detail the following

       (a)    Notice of event date/venue/Convenor
       (b)    Competition/tournament rules.
       (c)    Details of proposed dates and venues of regional, national and island
              events so that they may be incorporated into school planning.
       (d)    The availability of appropriate safe venues and facilities.
       (e)    The availability of officials of an acceptable standard.
       (f)    Details of levies, fees and other costs to be borne by competitors or
              schools in entering.

                                                   To be ratified and adopted February 2020
Following the receipt of a Coordination and Planning form, a Memorandum of
        Agreement (MoA) will be negotiated and signed between Sport Northland
        and the relevant parties who will be responsible for running the event.
        MoAs will detail the following information:

        (a)    The people responsible and accountable for the relationship in regard
               to the NSSSA event
        (b)    The level of Sport Northland commitment in regard to supporting the
               NSSSA event. Allocation of resources will be in the form of time,
               advice, and support provided by both the RSDA and the RSD.
        (c)    The level of commitment of the RSO or RSO approved Event Organiser
               in regard to supporting the NSSSA event.
        (d)    The provision of a detailed Health and Safety Plan
        (e)    The provision of a post event report that includes results.

        Special Notes:
(i)     Entry for all schools. The organisers of an approved NSSSA event will provide
        entry for all Northland Secondary Schools.

(ii)    Composite Teams. Composite teams will be permitted only if:
        (a) all other eligibility rules regarding age and attendance are met
        (b) the Principals of the schools that the students attend agree
        (c) one Principal accepts responsibility for the composite team
        (d) the team will be called by a name that indicates that more than one school
             has contributed players
        (e) the team will be treated like all other teams but cannot win a NSSSA
             Championship event. Any tournament rankings will not carry over to a
             tournament in the following year.
         (f) If playing in a qualifying tournament, a composite team cannot qualify and
             take the place of a single school team.

(iii)   Non-affiliated teams and individuals
        Entries will be accepted from non-affiliated schools and individuals for NSSSA
        events. This includes Home Schooled Students.
        There will be a non-affiliated entry fee that applies to such entries.
        Non-affiliated entrants cannot be deemed NSSSA Champions and cannot be
        awarded NSSSA Champion medals.
        Non-affiliated entrants can win and/or place at an event and will receive
        NSSSA certificates.

                                                     To be ratified and adopted February 2020
(iv)    Gender.
        (a) Unless by gender exception specified by NSSSA or RSO/NSO protocol, all
            NSSSA events and competitions shall be gender specific
        (b) Schools may, on behalf of one of their students, make a written
            submission one month out from the date of an event with supporting
            evidence requesting a variation to (a).
            This may for example be on behalf of an elite level athlete or a
            *transgender student.
        (c) All cases will be considered by the RSD and RSDA and any other
            appropriate parties on their individual merit which shall include the health
            and safety of all participants, unfair advantage (perceived or otherwise)
            and any policy advice from an NSO, School Sport NZ or any other agency.

(iv)    Breach of Regulations. There will be expectations that Regional Sporting
        Organisations have appropriate procedures in place to deal with breaches of
        regulations and that these will be applied.

(v)     A NSSSA Championship event is defined as a competition that involves at least
        four affiliated schools. Winning medals are only awarded at Championship

(vi)    Certificates will be awarded to 1st, 2nd and 3rd placings at an event unless the
        number of teams/individuals competing is not enough to warrant this. (Less
        than 7 participants only 1st and 2nd certificates. Less than 4 participants only 1st
        place certificates awarded)

(vii)   Mid-week competitions eg football and rugby that involve schools to play
        home and away games must take into account the kaupapa and length of the
        school day at the host school. These games must not commence before 4pm.
        ONLY the Principals of the schools involved may negotiate for an earlier
        start time and/or a neutral playing venue.

Non-approved Events. Events that fail to meet these criteria will not be approved.
They will be deemed un-sanctioned and will not be placed on the Northland
Secondary Schools Sports Association’s calendar of events.

NB: Schools are requested not to enter students in any event which is not
approved/sanctioned by the NSSSA and does not appear on the NSSSA Event Calendar.

                                                        To be ratified and adopted February 2020
As in all matters, these guidelines should be implemented with the primary
objective of ‘putting the young athletes first’.
When there is a case where students may be disadvantaged schools may apply for a
Written applications should go to the Regional Sports Director or Regional Sports
Director Assistant who will consult with the NSSS Council. The NSSS Council shall
make the final decision on any such application.

* Refer to School Sport NZ Transgender Students definition and guidelines.

2.     Eligibility of Competitors

Member schools of NSSSA require clearly defined eligibility criteria for participation in
Regional and Zonal secondary school sporting events that recognise the importance
of consistency, equity and fair play.

(a)   To establish equitable eligibility criteria that can be applied for all Northland
      regional and zonal Secondary School Sports events.
(b)   To define Bona Fide student status.
(c)   To establish consistency in age groupings which are recognised by all sporting
      bodies and member schools.

(a)    A student eligible to compete in Northland regional and zonal secondary
       school events must:
       (i)    be enrolled as a bona fide student at the school of representation and
              studying at least 80% of a full time learning programme for at least four
              weeks prior to the event.
       (ii)   have a satisfactory attendance record at the school. The final decision
              will be at the Principal's discretion.
       (iii)  The student must be under 19 years of age at the first of January in the
              year of the competition**.

A school must authenticate a student’s birth date if required.
Event Organisers may require validation by a birth certificate or passport.
All teams and individuals participating in Northland regional or zonal events must be
declared at the date prescribed by the event organisation. This involves the
completion of a team list by midday on the day before a calendared NSSSA event.

** Refer to School Sport NZ Eligibility Criteria in regard to NZSRU rule change for
   matches listed as under NZSRU jurisdiction

                                                      To be ratified and adopted February 2020
(i)    Other age divisions below the age of 19 are possible and should be based on
       the first of January as the qualifying date.
(ii)   Subject to the limits in School Team Eligibility, students who transfer from one
       school to another are eligible to compete provided they are on the roll of the
       participating school and have attended classes for at least four weeks prior to
       the time of the event.
(iii)  Year 7 and 8 students from an entered school may participate in a team as
       Secondary School students provided that the school makes this clear on its
(iv)   NSSSA will follow processes as per those outlined in School Sport NZ Eligibility
       of Competitors in regard to challenges of the enrolment history of a student;
       non-domestic students, Flexible Partnerships Learning Agreements and
       transgender students

3.     School Team Eligibility

A school team eligible to compete in NSSSA, National and Island Secondary School
events must not exceed the quota of students new to the school in the two years
preceding the first day of the event. For clarity, the student’s most recent enrolment
date at the school must be used.
Teams are limited to a maximum of two non-domestic students (or one for sports
with a quota of one) and any non-domestic students must always be included in the
quota allowed.
Refer to School Sport NZ Policies and Guidelines for a definition of domestic students
AND for additional notes in regard to maximum numbers for specific codes.
NB: A maximum of TWO Primary Caregiver Relocation Exemptions (PCREs) may be
included in any team that has a School Sport NZ NTS quota.

4.     Inducement to Transfer for Sporting Reasons (Poaching)

NSSSC does not condone any inducement of students to transfer from one school to
another for sporting reasons other than by way of publicly advertised scholarship.
Where the NSSPA advises the NSSSC in writing that it has investigated and is satisfied
that inducement has taken place, NSSSC may, in support, of the NSSPA impose a
penalty which may include exclusion of a student(s), team or other personnel (coach,
manager etc) from NSSSA sanctioned events.

                                                     To be ratified and adopted February 2020
5.     Relationships with Regional Sporting Organisations (RSOs)

Co-operation between NSSSA and RSOs is essential to foster healthy participation
and achievement in Secondary School Sport. This is brokered on behalf of NSSSC by
Sport Northland and the RSD and/or RSDA.

(a)   To ensure understanding between NSSSA and RSOs to enable identification
      and resolution of the issues facing secondary school sports.
(b)   To co-ordinate Regional and Zonal Tournaments in harmony with the school
(c)   To provide effective planning of school sports programmes through co-
      operation between NSSSA and RSOs.
(d)   To foster Regional and local programmes for students and teacher
(e)   To assist RSOs to establish a policy of developing their sport within secondary

(a)    RSOs should demonstrate a broad base of participation by Secondary School
(b)   NSSSA will promote regular and ongoing communication with all RSOs. This
       will include: regional/local meetings, event reports, calendar dates, Annual
       Report, coordinated training forums, etc where possible.
(c)    RSOs and NSSSA should develop co-operative strategies for the recruitment,
       retention and training of officials and coaches.

6.     Safety

All sports should be performed in an environment that is designed to maximise
aspects of safety and minimise the potential risks to those competing.

(a)   To ensure safe and healthy environments in which students play and compete.
(b)   To ensure that injuries that do occur are treated appropriately.
(c)   To ensure that those in charge of sports are aware of the importance of
      providing personal safety equipment as and where required.
(d)   To raise awareness of the dangers of illegal performance enhancing

                                                   To be ratified and adopted February 2020
(e)    To raise the level of coaching expertise as a means of reducing injury.

(a)    Where possible, students should perform in age/weight equivalent groupings.
(b)    Safety equipment should be regularly checked, assessed and readily available.
(c)    Principals should be aware of the benefits of having appropriately trained
       coaches working with their sports teams. Opportunities should be given to
       teachers wishing to seek accreditation. This has financial implications for
       schools and for national and regional sporting organisations.
(d)    Schools are to provide a management personnel configuration that
       acknowledges gender requirements
(e)    The provision of safe sporting facilities (including grounds) should be
       considered as integral components of a school's development plan.
(f)    Use of school facilities should always include the provision of safe and
       adequate resources to cope with an emergency.
(g)    School budgets should make provision for the purchase of injury treatment
(h)    Schools should make competitors aware of the dangers of performance
       enhancing substances and of the consequences for those who use them.
(i)    Schools should have clear procedures in place (i.e. checklist) for the
       management of all school sports involving large numbers of competitors or

7.     Behaviour
All those involved in Secondary School Sport (students, teachers, coaches, officials,
spectators) have the right to enjoy their sport in a healthy positive environment
which values above all else, respect for fair play principles in sport.

(a)   To ensure that all member schools of NSSSA take responsibility for the
      individuals participating in competition whether it be a team sport or
      individual sport.
(b)   To ensure that member schools provide a set of guidelines that encourages
      positive sporting behaviour.

(a) All teams/students participating in a sports tournament must be under the direct
    control of a school and have in charge a suitably qualified designated adult who is
    accountable to the Principal. The designated adult must assume responsibility
    throughout the duration of the event.

                                                     To be ratified and adopted February 2020
(b) Schools must try to provide a management personnel configuration that
    acknowledges gender requirements. For example, a school sports team that
    includes females should have a female in the management team.
(c) Schools are encouraged to have teachers or school staff in managerial and/or
    coaching positions
(d) All schools will be encouraged to have a policy for sports education and
(e) All schools will be encouraged to develop a FairPlay Charter
(f) All schools will be encouraged to have a Code of Conduct that includes
    disciplinary procedures.
(g) All schools participating in competitions conducted by Regional Sporting
    Organisations must abide by any rules set down by that sporting organisation.
(h) All events will be Smoke, Drug and Alcohol Free

The RSD on behalf of the NSSSC will assist schools in providing guidelines on
participants’ expectations and responsibilities.
A Code of Conduct follows.
This is the basis for NSSSC determining responsibility for the behaviours of those
people who represent a school in sport and is based on a similar document produced
by School Sport NZ.

8.    Appeals

Appeals on decisions made during the running of an NSSSA event must be dealt with
according to the stipulations of each sporting code. Appeal committees that may be
necessary at NSSSA events will be formed with the RSD and/or RSDA, a NSSSC
member and where possible a member of the relevant sporting code that is present.

                                                  To be ratified and adopted February 2020
Member Schools’ Code of Conduct
As Principal, I agree to being held responsible for all matters pertaining to sport in
which this school is involved.

These matters include
     ensuring that all teams from the school are in the charge of a responsible
      coaching and management team with an appropriate ratio of males/females
      to take account of different gender requirements
     ensuring that all students are aware of and are bound by the Smoke, Drug and
      Alcohol Free conditions under which the event is managed
     ensuring that all sports fixtures played at venues for which this school has
      responsibility are safe for both players and spectators
     ensuring the completion of an appropriate Health and Safety Plan for each
      sporting event or activity
     ensuring that all players representing this school meet the eligibility rules of
      the NSSSA (or Regional/National Sports Organisation as relevant)
      With respect to:
-                age
-                bona fide student status (all members)
-                type of school for which entry is deemed appropriate

      ensuring that all teams representing this school in NSSS events meet the
       eligibility rules of School Sport NZ (or Regional/National Sports Organisations
       as relevant) in regard to overseas students and students ‘new to school’
      that all athletes and officials are aware of their responsibilities and
       commitments before they send their entry for an event.
      ensuring that all athletes and officials are aware of their responsibilities and
       commitments before they send their entry for an event
      ensuring that no player from another school is encouraged to change schools
       in any one year to participate in future events
      ensuring that if this school offers any form of financial inducement – be that in
       cash or kind (uniform, board etc.) – that it will be through advertisement and
       not by way of individual approach

Contravention of this code could lead to a school’s suspension from all events under
the jurisdiction of NSSSA.

                                                      To be ratified and adopted February 2020
NSSSA Integrity Framework:
Code of Conduct & Disciplinary Procedures.
(Based on the School Sport NZ document published in School Sport NZ Sports Directory 2016)

NSSSA Sport Integrity Statement and Values
As a member school of NSSSA, or in taking part in an NSSSA approved event,
Principals recognise and accept collective responsibility to act with integrity in
protecting the heritage and values of school sport so that all Northland school
students have the opportunity to experience school sport in a positive and safe

In recognition of this responsibility, all schools taking part in NSSSA approved events
agree to display Honesty, Respect and Fairplay in their own school and towards
other schools and Event Organisers.

NSSSA Code of Conduct
1.     All NSSSA member schools and all schools entering NSSSA approved events
are bound to abide by this Code of Conduct.
2.     The Principal of the school is responsible for all matters pertaining to NSSSA
approved sporting events in which their school is involved, including adherences of
students and any other person associated with the schools sporting programme to
the NSSSA Code of Conduct. This includes students, staff, team officials, parents and
3.     The Principal will ensure that:
       3.1    All players representing their school meet the eligibility rules of NSSSA
              current at the time of the event and as published in this document.
       3.2    All teams from the school are supervised at all times including
              travelling to and from an event by a responsible coaching and
              management team and that all athletes and officials are aware of their
              responsibilities and commitments before they attend the event.
       3.3    All students and team officials are aware of and are bound by the
              Smoke, Drug and Alcohol Free conditions under which all NSSSA
              events are approved.
4.     No person or persons associated with a school may act in a way that is likely to
bring school sport into disrepute. This includes students, staff, team officials, parents
and spectators.
       4.1    At all times, any person above associated with school sport will act in
              accordance with the principles of fair play as outlined in Clauses 4.2 –
              4.4 to ensure that students have the right to enjoy their sport in a safe,
              positive environment.
       4.2    Players will;
              a) Play to the best of their ability and within the rules of the game.
              b) Show respect to other players – both team mates and opponents.

                                                                              To be ratified and adopted February 2020
c) Accept Officials’ decisions without gesture or argument.
               d) Be humble in victory and gracious in defeat.
               e) Support the coaches and their requests of them.
               f) Thank and acknowledge the coach, officials and opponents.
        4.3    Coaches will;
               a) Set affirmative and appropriate guidelines and behavioural
               standards for themselves and their athletes on and off the playing
               b) Assume responsibility for their players’ conduct both on and off the
               playing arena.
               c) Treat all players, including the opposition, with dignity and respect
               and demonstrate positive examples of sportsmanship at all times.
               d) Respect and accept the judgement and decisions of Officials without
        4.4    Parents and Spectators will;
               a) Positively encourage and support the efforts of all players.
               b) Refrain from any criticism or abuse directed at coaches or Officials.
               c) Put an emphasis on genuine effort ahead of victory and encourage
               players to accept the outcomes of all games, irrespective of the result.
               d) Recognise good play by either team and never ridicule an individual
               player in either team.
               e) Display self-control on the side-line- remember young people play
               sport for their satisfaction not parents or spectators.
5.      No person or persons officially associated with a school may approach
students from another school and induce them to transfer schools for sporting
purposes. This includes staff and team officials.
        5.1    Where a complaint is received about improper inducements it shall be
referred in the first instance to the Regional Sports Director (RSD) to investigate and,
if possible resolve. Should the issue not be resolved it may be referred to the NSSS
Council and/or NZSSS Council for further action.
        5.2    Where the RSD is provided with either
               a) written confirmation from a NSS Principal that they have
investigated an allegation of inducement and they are satisfied that inducement has
taken place, or
               b) sufficient evidence that a person or persons associated with a
school has approached a student from another school that is it satisfied a formal
investigation is appropriate then provisions in the NSSSA Disciplinary Procedures may
be enacted.
        5.3    When a school does offer scholarships, financial assistance or any
other form of inducement for students to transfer schools for sporting purposes, this
will be through publicly advertised forums only and not be way of individual

                                                     To be ratified and adopted February 2020
NSSSA Disciplinary Procedures
Where NSSS Council receives an allegation in writing signed by the Principal of a
school or a CEO of a Regional Sporting Organisation, that is deemed by the Regional
Sport Director (RSD) to be;
a.      of a nature to warrant an investigation and is
b.      supported by sufficient evidence to warrant an investigation
the RSD, with agreement from the NSSS Council Chairperson, may elect to initiate a
disciplinary process.

1.     In the first instance, the RSD may investigate the allegation and, should he/she
believe the allegation to be substantiated, propose a resolution which may include a
formal warning or a sanction as per Clause 7 of these Disciplinary Procedures.

2.     Should
       i.     any party to the allegation not be willing to accept the determination
              notified by the RSD in clause 1, or
       ii.    the RSD assess the allegation to be of a more serious nature, the RSD
              may convene a Disciplinary Panel to consider alleged breaches of the
              Code of Conduct.

3.     The Disciplinary Panel will consist of:
       i.     The NSSS Council Chairperson or delegated NSS Principal who will chair
              the panel.
       ii.    The CE of Sport Northland or delegated Sport Northland Manager
       Iii.   An independent member from the sports sector such as an RSO as
              identified by the Principal Representative.
       iv.    A suitably qualified member of the legal profession

4.     The Regional Sports Director and/or a person or persons delegated by the
       NSSS Council will investigate the allegation using the following process:
       i.    The Principal of the school against which the allegation has been made
             will be notified in writing of the details of the allegation including the
             school or organisation bringing the allegation and the details of
             evidence provided.
       ii.   The Principal receiving notification of the allegation will be asked to
             provide a written response to the allegation to the RSD within seven
       iii.  During the investigation, the RSD or delegated authority may gather
             additional evidence including interviews with any person or persons
             likely to provide information relevant to the allegation.
       iv.   The RSD or delegated authority may, with agreement from the NSSS
             Council Chairperson, decide;
       a)    no further action is required or
       b)    to offer to arrange mediation to attempt to resolve the allegation or

                                                     To be ratified and adopted February 2020
c)     convene an NSSSC Disciplinary Panel to hear the allegation and decide
            on any sanctions, if appropriate.
     v.     The RSD will inform the Principal of the school facing the allegation
            and the party bringing the allegation within 48 hours of the decision
            taken in iv. above.

5.   Where a NSSSC Disciplinary Panel is convened to hear an allegation
     i.    The Principals of schools involved, and any person/s involved with the
           allegation will be informed of the time, date and place of the hearing,
           all evidence collected and invited to attend or provide further written
     ii.   All written material will be supplied to all parties above at least 48
           hours prior to the hearing.
     iii.  At the hearing;
           a)      The RSD will present the allegation, the response from the
                   Principal of the alleged school and any other evidence
           b)      The Disciplinary Panel Chairperson will invite the Principal, or
                   any person delegated by the Principal of the school bringing the
                   allegation to speak, followed by the Principal of the school
                   alleged to have breached the Code of Conduct or any person
                   they have delegated.

6.   Sanctions may include:
     i.     Written warnings, with or without conditions including periods of
            prescribed supervision, on involvement in future NSSSA approved
     ii     Permanent or temporary exclusion of an individual from NSSSA
            approved events.
     iii    Temporary exclusion of a school or team from NSSSA approved

7.   Any Principal wishing to appeal a decision must do so by informing the RSD in
     writing within 10 days of a decision being formally notified.
     i      The appeal will be considered by the full NSSS Council at which the
            appealing Principal and the Principal of any other school party to the
            allegation may attend and speak to the appeal. To ensure appeals are
            heard in a timely manner, the appeal hearing may be held by
     ii     The full NSSS Council may uphold the original decision and any
            sanction(s) applied by the Disciplinary Panel or alter the original
            decision and sanction(s) in any way.
     iii    The decision of any such appeal will be binding on all parties.
     iv     Any further recourse on an appeal decision must be conducted
            through SCHOOL SPORT NZ.

                                                 To be ratified and adopted February 2020
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