All schools, when they join the League and are assigned to a district, accept the respective athletic plans. The code states in part "To accept decisions of officials without protest; to see that officials are extended protection and courtesy, by players, school personnel and laymen; to treat your opponents as your guests, and to put clean play and real sportsmanship above victories."

The State Executive Committee has assessed more penalties to coaches and players for abuse of game officials than for any other one rule violation. There can be no athletic activities without officials. Unless they are protected, the educational benefits of athletics could be denied to high school pupils. Officials must be mutually agreed upon in advance. If no prior agreement is reached, beginning the game constitutes agreement. It is strongly recommended that:

  1. Police protection be furnished at all football games. The officers should meet the game officials and escort them to dressing facilities, before and after the game. Officers should be situated on the field so that they can protect the officials.
  2. Each member school should construct a fence around the playing field to restrain fans from moving onto the field. In many cases where officials are abused, there has not been an adequate fence or barrier around the field.
  3. The public address system should be used prior to each game to explain to the fans the meaning of the football code and that the officials are guests of both teams and should be so treated. Pre-game announcements along with the playing of the National Anthem are also recommended to help create a proper atmosphere.

It is the responsibility of the coach to set the example of proper conduct toward officials. The coach, through his actions, generally sets off the "spark" which results in misconduct of lay people toward the officials. The coach sets the proper example in conduct, to students and to the fans. The coach as a member of the school faculty is evaluated very critically by the League, in any case of mistreatment of officials.

For all varsity athletic contests, a designated administrator is to be appointed to act as a security and hospitality aide for officials. Official's chapters should be notified prior to the season or game as to procedures for items such as parking, dressing rooms, security, and method of payment.

If an attack should occur on a game official, the school administration and the school board should take immediate steps to see that the person making the attack on the official or officials is apprehended, charged, and prosecuted. The school must see that the guilty person is brought to justice. Token punishments will not carry much weight.

Schools must take proper precautions to see that all game officials are protected and extended courtesy. In case of any misconduct by a fan, player or a coach schools should prosecute this person to the legal limits. Proper preparation can prevent most misconduct relative to officials.

NOTE: If extreme verbal abuse is directed toward an official or if an official is struck, pushed, bumped, or handled in any way, there shall be a penalty assessed by the State Executive Committee. This penalty will be either: 1) public reprimand; 2) disqualification; 3) suspension from coaching high school football. THINK BEFORE YOU LOSE YOUR TEMPER!