Guiding Principles for Provincial Championships
The SHSAA is committed to amateurism, student-athlete welfare, gender equity, sportsmanship and fair play, cultural diversity and the overall athletic experience. This will be reflected in every aspect of the athletic administrative operations and decisions.
The SHSAA plans and coordinates all playoffs leading to the provincial championships. Districts and school divisions plan and coordinate interschool athletic competitions and organize and support playoffs at the school division and SHSAA district level as proposed by the SHSAA.
The competition among teams in playoffs leading to the provincial championship is genuine yet fair to ensure that each participating team has a reasonable chance to be successful.
The competitive environment, application of rules and conduct of athletes, coaches and officials contribute positively to achievement of the social, personal and citizenship goals of education.
Celebration of Excellence
The overriding purpose of provincial championships is to celebrate team and individual athlete success, participation and demonstration of the benefits and qualities of sportsmanship. Every effort is made to recognize each of these benefits of high school athletic competition.
The advancement of individual athletes and teams to a provincial championship is by a series of playoff competitions. It is generally given that playoffs leading to the provincial championship may include playoffs at the school, school division, SHSAA district or conference, regional and provincial final levels. The number of meaningful and manageable playoffs necessary to eliminate to the provincial final event will determine the number of levels and sequence of playoffs.
The scheduling of playoffs must respect ‘instructional time in the classroom’; however, it is also acknowledged that there is great educational value derived from participation in competitive playoffs leading to the provincial championship. It is inevitable that some classroom instructional time will be directed into the athletic opportunities for student athletes. Playoffs leading to the provincial championship should respect economic implications, travel time and absence from school.
The guiding principles are applied consistently across all sports and levels of championship competition and from year to year to ensure meaningful and manageable levels of play. Therefore the classification structure for team sport and the playoff structure leading to the provincial championship must be consistent. Individual sports should also follow a consistent level of playoffs albeit they may differ from team sport playoffs.
Number of Teams in Championships
The maximum number of teams permitted to play in playoffs leading to a provincial championship is the least reasonable number in consideration of the sport to ensure efficient management and delivery of a safe and competitive event.
Classification of team sports is based on the number of students eligible to participate on behalf of the school. This is generally considered the fairest way to classify. It is acknowledged a larger student population provides more athletes to the school program, therefore a more competitive team. Classification is not intended to provide equal number of teams in each classification. It is the intent of classification to identify competitive levels of play using population of schools to define the levels.