As a certified athletic administrator and former Department of Education Interscholastic Sports Activities program coordinator, I am very pleased that the Independent Interscholastic Athletic Association of Guam has chosen to adopt a trimester calendar. This was a move that I advocated 20 years ago, and was approved by the Board of Control in August 2001 under the newly formed public school organization, Guam Interscholastic Federation, which became independent from DOE. Unfortunately, we could not see it through because of politics and changes in DOE administration.
While it is a long time coming, I commend the IIAAG for coming to the realization that the trimester sports calendar would be best. The reasons that President Terry Debold had stated were pretty much the same justifications that I had made with our BOC in 2001, and wrote in a letter to our athletic directors in May 2002. However, I would like to mention the other justifications for adopting a trimester sports calendar as follows:
• All 50 high school state associations and mainland colleges operate a trimester sports calendar which is dependent on seasonal climates.
• The most important thing is that the IIAAG moves closer to compliance measures of the federal law - Title IX, the Sports Equity Act, that governs both collegeiate and high school sports activities. Title IX is overseen by the Office of Civil Rights, and its compliance mandate ensures gender equity and sports equity in the areas of participation related to competition times, facilities, finances, etc … .
• While there are so many compliance mandates, this puts IIAAG on the right path.
• All thee seasons will be equal as opposed to the cramped-up second and fourth quarters of a four-season calendar, and the first quarter will not have to begin in July, but in August, when schools officially open.
A trimester sports calendar insures a pre- and postseason tournament, and regional competition. Also, multisport student-athletes will be able to begin the new season with other student-athletes because there will be no overlapping of seasons.
Interscholastic sports participation is a privilege granted by a minimum GPA standard, and good citizenship. High school students must choose which three sports they will participate in, instead of four. However, this model helps student-athletes better prepare and develop for college participation, which seems to be the desired path.
With respect to not messing with Guam Department of Education Interscholastic Sports Association schedules, with both organizations going their separate ways, it was bound to happen. To answer this, as in the 50 states, a state association should be formed to oversee interaction in state tournaments based on school population categories or divisions, such as the Division I and II state finals operated by the Hawaii High School State Association.