Saskatchewan High Schools Athletic Association in conjunction with the Royal Canadian Legion, Saskatchewan Command would like to announce plans for SHSAA fall championship playoffs being conducted on Remembrance Day weekend 2017. A joint press release will be sent to Saskatchewan media outlets on Tuesday, October 31, 2017.
The uniqueness of November 11, 2017 occurring on a Saturday caused the SHSAA to reach out to the Legion for cooperation and understanding in planning the playoffs that will be conducted for volleyball and football on that weekend. Approximately 3500 student athletes will represent 247 volleyball teams in 47 tournaments and 12 football teams in 6 championship games. Although some school division calendars will allow the volleyball playoffs to be conducted on Thursday and Friday, those playoffs that are scheduled for Saturday will not start prior to 1:00pm in order that communities and schools have an opportunity to fulfill traditional Remembrance Day observance through events planned in their communities. SHSAA is encouraging all teams participating in playoffs that weekend to take time to acknowledge Remembrance Day in honour of the men and women who have served, and continue to serve our country during times of war, conflict, and peace. The Royal Canadian Legion, Saskatchewan Command has provided their cooperation, support, and understanding to the importance of sport in our schools and communities as an example of the opportunities provided to youth through the service of our veterans. All host schools are encouraged to plan an observance of Remembrance Day and all student athletes, coaches, and officials will be provided with poppy stickers from the Legion to wear during competition throughout the day. Extending the tie between the two organizations is the Bud Weaver Championship Trophy that will be presented to the 4A 12-man football provincial champion. This trophy was first awarded in 1946 and the inscription on the trophy reads: In revered memory of the members of the University of Saskatchewan Huskies who lost their lives in the Great War 1939-1945.
The guiding principles of SHSAA indicate that playoffs are scheduled to respect instructional time in the classroom and as such are typically conducted on Friday evening and Saturday. It is acknowledged that there is great educational value derived from participation in competitive playoffs leading to a provincial championship and it is inevitable that some classroom instructional time will be directed into the athletic opportunities for student athletes. Playoffs leading to the provincial championship have always respected economic implications, travel time, and absence from school.
Since many of the volleyball playoffs will be split over two days, schools will be making special travel and accommodation arrangements to make this possible, and these efforts need to be acknowledged. Building the skills of citizenship is one of the foundations of the SHSAA and it is through occurrences like this that those skills and gaining an appreciation of the efforts of those who serve is made possible through athletics in education.