Cheer Constitution

I.     Organization

 

A.      This constitution has been written and adopted for the Florence Middle School cheerleading squad. The team and its constitution are governed by Florence Middle School and the Florence Middle School cheer coaching staff.

 

B.     Henceforth, the name of the organization shall be Florence Middle School Cheerleaders.

 

C.     The purpose of the Florence Middle School Cheerleader squad is to:

 

1.     Create school spirit, pride and loyalty among the students, staff, and administrators,

2.     Promote interest in school activities and perform at assigned school functions,

3.     To develop responsibility, teach self-respect, encourage honest effort, strive for perfection and develop character,

4.     Teach teamwork and pride in a quality performance through maintaining high standards.

 

D.     Coaches will be hired by the Rankin County School District upon a recommendation by the principal.

 

1.     The coach(s) will be responsible for the daily running and activities of the FMS cheerleaders.

2.     The coach(s) will be responsible for administering all disciplinary procedures.

3.     The coach(s) may place certain restrictions on team members.

4.     The coach(s) will report any and all infractions to the athletic director, cheer council (made up of 5 teachers, coaches, and Assistant principal), and/or principal of the school.

5.     The coach(s), the athletic director, the principal or the cheer council may make amends/changes to this constitution without prior notice or notification for the betterment of the squad and its members at any time.

6.     Coach(s) will be certified with the MHSAA and the AACCA.

 

II.             Eligibility/Grades

 

A.     Each squad member MUST pass all ACADEMIC courses and maintain a 70 average in these courses. The squad member must have an overall average of a 70 or above. IF A CHEERLEADER MAKES THE SQUAD AND DOES NOT HAVE THE APPROPRIATE GPA IN ACADEMIC CLASSES WHEN REPORT CARDS ARE ISSUED AT THE END OF THE 3RD NINE WEEKS, THEY WILL BE PLACED ON PROBATION UNTIL THE END OF THE SCHOOL YEAR. IF THE GRADE IS NOT BROUGHT UP THAT NINE WEEKS (NOT SEMESTER GRADE), THE CHEERLEADER WILL BE DISMISSED FROM THE SQUAD. All money paid to this point is NON REFUNDABLE, and any money raised through fundraising for this cheerleader, will be divided among the remainder of the squad. If uniforms or camp wear has been ordered at this point, the remainder of a balance of what has not been paid must be paid.

B.     A cheerleader must maintain consecutive A’s, B’s, and C’s in order to remain on the squad. This is according to the MHSAA guidelines. If a cheerleader is placed on probation for a low grade in a class, they are required to bring up that grade by the end of the next grading period (including progress reports). If they bring up that grade, but another class grade drops, they will remain on probation again for the next grading period. If a cheerleader makes a D or below in the same class for two consecutive 9 weeks, the cheerleader will be removed from the squad. All monies paid to that point will be forfeited. Also, that cheerleader (parents) is responsible for any unpaid balance. If a cheerleader is placed on probation, that member will be required to show a signed report card to the coach(s) each nine weeks. Each squad member will receive 3 demerits per D and 4 demerits per F – plus be placed on probation for unsatisfactory grades.

C.     After making the squad and the new school year begins, grades will be checked at the midpoint of the quarter (progress reports) and the end of a quarter (report cards). Any grades in any class that are below the standards listed above, at the end of the quarter, will result in demerits as indicated in section VIII.h and VIII.i. Grades that are below the standards listed above by the end of the quarter will also result in academic probation. 

 

D.    TRYOUT REQUIREMENTS:

 

1.     There will be a $40 nonrefundable fee for tryouts to cover the costs of judges and material for tryouts.

2.     Each student trying out for cheerleader must submit their completed release forms BEFORE tryouts take place. The forms must be signed by the candidate and guardian or the student will not be allowed to tryout.

3.     Each student trying out must have a physical on file that will be good for a calendar year.

4.     The number of cheerleaders on the squad will be determined by the natural score divide. 

5.     Each female participant will be judged on one specific cheer, tumbling, a specific dance routine, one chant of choice and a jump series.

6.     Each male participant will be judged on once specific cheer, one jump, tumbling and one partner stunt.

7.     ALL DECISIONS MADE BY THE JUDGES ARE FINAL

 

III.          Absences/Attendance

 

A.    Demerits will be given for any student who is absent from a practice or a game, excused or unexcused. Two demerits are given for each absence from a practice, and three demerits are given for any missed part of a school related event. If a cheerleader misses a game or performance without proper/prior notification TO THE COACH, double demerits will be given (maximum of 6). Calling a squad member is NOT the same as contacting the coach(s) or leaving a message for the coach(s). Communication is the KEY! All members of FMS Cheerleading squad must attend every game and practice IN ITS ENTIRITY.  DO NOT ASK TO LEAVE EARLY. IF YOU MISS ANY PART OF A GAME, 3 DEMERITS WILL BE GIVEN.

 

B.     All students who participate in school activities must be in school approximately 67% of REGULAR, full-day attendance the day the activity is scheduled. This means that a student must attend approximately 3 blocks on that day.

 

C.     If a squad member misses ANY practice, she WILL NOT be able to perform for the next performance. This includes missing athletic block since some practices will be held during this time. All doctor appointments should be scheduled so that they do not interfere with FMS cheerleader practices or game activities. Activities that are missed because of appointments are NOT excused and the cheerleader will receive demerits (See section A).

 

D.    A parent having to work is NOT an excuse for missing any activity, nor is not having a ride to/from the activity. All rides must be set up before hand. If a ride is more than 10 minutes late, 2 demerits will be recorded per 10 minutes.

 

E.     All students must ride to any off campus activities to include practices, games, competitions, etc. using school approved transportation. Cheerleaders may sign out with parent/guardian after event. IF YOU NEED TO RIDE WITH SOMEONE OTHER THAN A PARENT/GUARDIAN, YOU MUST HAVE A NOTE TO RIDE WITH THAT SOMEONE AND THAT MUST BE SET UP BEFORE HAND. If a student is to ride with another squad member on a regular basis, a note must be kept on file in your portfolio with the cheerleading coach(s). Any deviation to this must be documented each time.

 

F.     All parents must sign their student out from games. IF YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO BE AT AN EVENT TO SIGN YOUR STUDENT OUT, A NOTE MAY BE SENT FOR ANOTHER CHEERLEADER PARENT OR RELATIVE TO SIGN THAT PERSON OUT.  All persons signing a cheerleader out must be over the age of 18 and on an approved list with the coach(s).  A cheerleader who does not bring a note will not be checked out.

 

IV.            Uniform

 

A.     Each member will be expected to purchase practice uniforms. Practice uniforms will be purchased for camp and will be used throughout the school year during regular practices to include athletic block. If a cheerleader loses a practice uniform or it becomes soiled so that it does not look appropriate, the cheerleader will be required to purchase another one at her own expense.

 

B. Performance uniforms will be bought before the 2019-2020 school year is over and will be delivered 5-6 weeks after ordering. The cheerleader (parent/guardian) will be responsible for purchasing her own uniform and all accessories. A fitting date will be set following our tryouts. Every effort will be made to do this during school hours. A parent or guardian may be present at the fitting since each cheerleader will sign that the correct sizes are documented. Each cheerleader will be required to maintain good condition and cleanliness of her practice and regulation/competition uniform(s) (warm ups included) on a weekly basis. If a uniform is soiled beyond being able to get it clean, a new one must be purchased at the cheerleader’s (family) expense.

It is IMPERATIVE that you understand uniforms that are custom made ARE NOT RETURNABLE – make sure you allow for some growth of your child during the school year when you order skirts (for length and in the waist), shoes, etc. There is at least a 5-week waiting period for custom uniform pieces.

C. Footgear and accessories such as bloomers, ribbons, poms, etc. will be purchased by     the cheerleader through a catalog order at the same time uniforms are ordered. The choice will be the choice of the coach(s), approved by the athletic director.

D. All cheerleaders will adhere to the FMS dress code during school hours and may not change for practices until the appropriate time before practice with the exception of activities during school hours and athletic block. Any violations will result in demerits.

E.  Warm up suits will be purchased by each member of the squad for cold weather activities. The costs of these are included in the estimated cost of being a cheerleader and will be ordered when uniforms are ordered.

F.  A cheerleader for FMS will not be allowed to lend out any portion of their uniform or practice outfits, or accessories to any person that is not a member of the FMS cheerleading squad. This includes warm up pants, jackets, etc. This is not limited to what is listed. Three demerits will result as a penalty for breaking this rule! A cheerleader may also NOT cheer at any school function, other than games, without the direct consent from the cheer coach(s) or athletic director or principal, with notification to the cheer coach(s).

V.         FINANCIAL

A.  A cheerleader (and her family) is responsible for her own summer camp cost including attire, extra meals, and souvenirs. District approved transportation will be taken to camp. Any exspense will be divided between all team members and included in the estimated cost.

B.  A cheerleader is responsible for the purchase of uniforms to be worn throughout the year (i.e. uniform, practice clothes, shoes, ribbons, jackets, warm up suit, etc…)

C.  A cheerleader is responsible for all stunt classes and choreography classes IF decided on by the coach(s). Choreography classes will be held here at the school. Tumbling class will be held at a certified gym. A choreography coach will be hired and paid for each month with the decision of the coach and paid for by the cheerleader’s guardian.

D.  A cheerleader must participate in any fundraiser the squad undertakes, in its entirety.  If they do not participate, they will NOT receive profits from that fundraiser.

E.  A cheerleader is REQUIRED to participate in competitions. If said cheerleader decides they do not want to compete, they should not try out for the squad.

F.  Any financial problems should be discussed only with the cheerleading coach(s) before the payment is due. If finances are going to be a problem throughout the year, the student should not try out.

VI.       MEDICAL

A. A copy of the medical form is part of the tryout packet and must be kept on file with the coach(s).

B. All cheerleaders must have a physical on file with the coach(s) before the tryout clinic.

C. The coach(s) must keep these forms in her possession at all times during scheduled practices and performances.

VII.     CHARACTER

A. Team members should be leaders within the school and set a good example at all times.

B. Team members should be above reproach, maintaining good personal appearances, hygiene, and habits that cannot be criticized.

1.  Smoking, drinking alcoholic beverages, and/or drug use is grounds for immediate dismissal by the cheerleading coach(s). This applies to school hours, school activities, or if the coach(s) observes any type of this behavior off school grounds.

 

2.  The cheerleader shall refrain from any public displays of affection toward a significant other that would be deemed inappropriate during school hours. These are also considered inappropriate when observed after school hours but at school functions to include but not limited to high school events and school dances.

 

3.  In cases where another person witnesses the account, the event will be investigated and the cheer council will make a disciplinary decision.

 

4.  Each member of the squad must abide by those standards set by FMS and RCSD, which are found in the student handbook.

 

 

C.  A member of the squad must be courteous and friendly to ALL OTHER TEAM MEMBERS as well as the student body of FMS.

1.  HARASSMENT OF ANY TYPE WILL NOT BE TOLERATED AND WILL BE GROUNDS FOR IMMEDIATE DISMISSAL FROM THE SQUAD. THIS INCLUDES BUT IS NOT LIMITED TO VERBAL THREATS, VERBAL ABUSE, OR PHYSICAL THREATS AND ABUSE.

2.  A cheerleader of FMS will not be involved in any type of harassment via the Internet (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or the like) – nor will they be involved in any type of threatening text messaging.  If found guilty of such, the cheerleader will be dismissed from the squad.  A cheerleader found to be baiting someone to make harassing or verbal statements to them via text, Facebook sites (or the like) or in person, will receive 4 demerits and probation for two weeks. A second offense of this nature will result in dismissal from the squad.

3.  A squad member must be courteous and friendly toward other teams and visitors. Inappropriate actions towards a visiting team or while we are the visiting team will result in suspension from that scheduled activity and disciplinary action will be determined by the cheer council.

4.  A squad member must be respectful to the cheer coach(s). Failure to comply will result in 3 demerits and they cannot be worked off.

5.  A squad member must be respectful to ALL teachers and administration of FMS.  Disrespect towards any teacher or administrator will not be tolerated. You will receive demerits for the punishment given to you by the teacher and/or administrator.

 

Parent/Guardian Expectations

1.     Be supportive and reinforce the lessons taught by coaching staff.

2.     
Attend all parent information meetings.

3.      Be positive!! Parents should not use any derogative language or slander any member of the squad, other parents, or the coach. This includes, but not limited to, speech, texting, and any online form of communication. 


4.     Communication between parents and coaches is necessary part of a strong program. The coach(s) make a pledge to communicate all information to your family as soon as possible.

VIII.    DEMERITS

A.  Demerits will be used as a disciplinary tool.

B.  The cheer coach(s) will give demerits. When a cheerleader is informed they have a demerit (s), they are responsible for signing the coach’s book. If the cheerleader does not sign the book by the end of the practice or game, the demerit(s) will double.

C.  A cheerleader accumulating 6 demerits will be removed from a performance (game, pep rally, camp activity, or competition) of the coach’s choice. A parent conference will be called at this time.

D.  Nine demerits will result in suspension for two weeks.  Suspension means that said cheerleader will have to attend all cheer events, in required uniform, but will have to sit out. A parent conference will be called at this time.

E.  Twelve demerits will result in dismissal from the squad.  This means that no monies paid/raised to this point will be refunded to the student or parent.  Any monies due for uniforms/camp, competitions registered for, etc… will still be due and must be paid in a timely manner. Any student dismissed from the squad because of grades may try out again the following year. Any student dismissed from the squad because of behavior/disciplinary reasons or quits the squad, will NOT be allowed to try out for the squad for a calendar year. A parent conference will be called at this time.

F.  One Demerit will be given for (but not limited to):

            1.  tardiness to an activity (team) – practice, game, event, competition.

            2.  disrespect toward team captain or co-captain

3.  horseplay or not paying attention in practice, at a game, or at camp.

4.  not following instructions the first time given.

5.  being picked up late from a practice or game – 1 demerit per 10 minutes

6.  anything else not listed as deemed by the coach(s).

 

G.  Two demerits will be given for (but not limited to):

            1.  absences from practice

            2.  use of inappropriate language while a cheerleader at FMS

3.  ISS or BSD for any reason.

*Demerits will double if coach is not informed by the cheerleader.

            4.  cheating on any type of school assignment.

 

H.  Three demerits will be given for (but not limited to):

            1.  disrespect toward cheerleading coach(s)/choreographers or parents in public

            2.  any type of office write up (including dress code, academic, or behavior)

            3.  harassment of any type toward students, cheerleaders, teachers, etc.

4.  stunting or tumbling of any kind without the direct supervision of a cheer coach or assigned choreographer

5.  disrespect towards any teacher or administrator

6.  absence for any portion of a game

 

I.  Four demerits will be given for (but not limited to):

●      Baiting someone to make harassing statements (via text, verbal, etc.)

           

J.  Suspension from School

 

A cheerleader who is suspended will be brought before the cheer coach and administration who will be responsible for determining the consequences of the suspension. Consequences can include suspension from the squad for a set amount of time or dismissal from the squad.

In the event the cheerleader is suspended due to missed after school detention, the cheerleader will be suspended from the squad for two weeks (see section D).

 

 

 

 

The following activities (and others as deemed by the coach(s) will result in a point deduction for athletic block. If these are habitual, they will result in demerits which could lead to dismissal from the team:

 

●      chewing gum at practice OR in uniform

●      forgotten props (poms, signs, etc.)

●      inappropriate/wrong practice uniform (wrong shirt, socks, shorts, shoes)

●      inappropriate make up (having on nail polish, fake nails, glitter, gothic type makeup, jewelry of any kind during practice or performance.

●      paperwork/payments turned in late – 1 demerit per late practice.

●      using a cell phone during the duration of a practice or game without permission.

●      tardies & absences from athletic block

●      tardies after game breaks

 

I X.      QUITTING THE SQUAD

 

If you wish to no longer be a member of the FMS cheerleading squad, you must submit a written letter of resignation with your signature and your parent/guardian’s signature.  Then, and only then, will you be considered no longer a part of the squad, and you may not try out for cheerleader for one calendar year. Any activities after this point will not include said cheerleader, including annual (yearbook pictures). No monies will be refunded to you. If you quit the squad but have an unpaid balance, it must be paid off in a timely manner.

 

X.         TEAM LEADERS

 

A.  There will be one team leader chosen per week, determined by the coach(s). This position will be earned through hard work and leadership during practices.

 

XI.       CAMP

 

A.  All members are REQUIRED to attend the summer camp which the coach(s) chooses.

 No excuses will be accepted.

B.  It is the responsibility of each member to pay for their own summer camp and arrange their own transportation from camp.

C.  Cost of the camp includes rooming, instruction and food. Any extra costs will be the responsibility of the cheerleader.

D.  A cheerleader may NOT leave the premises of summer camp without approval of the coach(s). Any violation will result in AUTOMATIC dismissal from the squad. A curfew violation at summer camp will result in 4 demerits.

 

 

XII.     FUNDRAISING

 

A.  All members are required to participate in any fundraising that is generated by the team. If we do a fundraiser and a cheerleader is not present or does not participate 100%, that cheerleader will not receive profits from that fundraiser. If money is turned in past the due time, that cheerleader will receive 1 demerit per day it is late.

 

B.  All monies taken in by fundraising for FMS Cheerleaders will be deposited in the FMS Cheerleading account and used for cheerleading purposes, including anything to promote school pride and spirit among students, faculty and our administration.

 

C.  The principal must approve all fundraisers.

 

D.  It is not the responsibility of the coach(s) to run fundraising. The parent(s) of the squad must be willing to organize and lead a fundraiser if they do not want to cover the cost of camp, clinics, choreographers, uniforms and buddy gifts.