The Georgia High School Association (GHSA) governs all sanctioned sports in Georgia high schools. Fencing is not a sanctioned sport, but the Pope administration has decided that all Pope fencers must comply with the GHSA academic eligibility rules. In addition, the Pope administration requires all Pope fencers to complete the Cobb County Athlete Registration process.
All Pope fencers must have completed the Cobb County Athlete Registration process for the current school year. Submissions that are dated 1 April or later of the previous school year count for this year.
The process is started from your ParentVUE account and requires you to enter information about the athlete. The athlete must also have a physical exam by a medical professional who must sign a form (which you download from ParentVUE) that you upload to ParentVUE to complete the process.
The GHSA eligibility rules are complex.
- The rules can be found in section 1 of the GHSA bylaws at ghsa.net/ghsa-constitution-and-laws
- A presentation about them is at ghsa.net/ghsa-eligibility-seminar-session-1-academic-eligibility-regulations
- Pope’s Athletic Director (Joshua Mathews) is the expert on these matters, please direct any questions about eligibility to him.
Here is a short unofficial summary of the rules.
- Age: Students must be no more than 19 on May 1 of the current school year.
- 8 semesters: Students are eligible for 8 consecutive semesters beginning with the 1st semester of 9th grade.
- Enrollment: Students must be enrolled full time. Full time means:
- In regular attendance.
- Taking courses in the current semester worth at least 2.5 Carnegie Units that count towards graduation.
- Previous semester: Students must have passed (a grade of 70) 2.5 Carnegie Units in the previous semester.
- This rule does not apply to the 1st semester of 9th grade.
- The courses must be ones that count towards graduation.
- Summer school counts as part of the spring semester.
- “Previous semester” means the previous calendar semester. A student who is not in school in fall is not eligible in the spring even in he or she passed 2.5 units in the previous spring.
- Previous years in high school: Students must have passed the following number of units in previous years:
- Second year students must have passed at least 5 Carnegie Units in their first year.
- Third year students must have passed at least 11 Carnegie Units in their first two years.
- Fourth year students must have passed at least 17 Carnegie Units in their first three years.
- College courses: Students in Dual Enrollment programs may be eligible and college courses can be counted.
- Students in Joint Enrollment, Early College or Gateway to College programs may not be eligible.
- Credit recovery/make-up work: Students who make up the required number of of units within the first 14 days of a semester through a program available to all students may be eligible once the passing grade is recorded.
- Students with disabilities: Students who are enrolled in a special education program (even if not physically located at the parent school) may be eligible as long as they meet their IEP (Individual Education Program) requirements.
“Carnegie Units” are course units used by Pope. During a semester with a traditional schedule, a student takes six courses worth 0.5 units, so passing 2.5 units means passing five of the six courses. Students taking year a long course worth 1.0 unit with a single grade at the end of the course are considered to have passed 0.5 units in the fall semester if their grade is at least 70 at the start of the spring semester.