In years past, many of our cheerleaders, dancers and pep squad members went unrecognized for their hard work on the sidelines.
However, the LHSAA is proud to help oversee a revamped cheer, dance and pep squad program that is helping to bring attention to these skillful student-athletes.
At the LHSAA Annual Convention this past January, our organization hosted a series of cheerleading rules clinics, which were designed to keep our cheer program members up to date with the many changes to safety rules and procedures for these squads.
Our number one priority for cheer and dance teams remains creating the safest, most enjoyable atmosphere possible for our student-athletes.
We also introduced the Spirit Program in order to recognize and enhance the cheer and dance high school experience. There are four parts of the program: the Spirit of Louisiana Award, the Coach of the Year Award, the Annual Coaches Clinic and the LHSAA State Cheer and Dance Competition.
The Spirit of Louisiana Award recognizes the top all-around cheerleading programs in the state - those that embody community service, outstanding school athletic support, spirit raising activities and academics.
The winner will be announced later this year.
Last year, the LHSAA awarded the Spirit of Louisiana community service award to the deserving young ladies of Quitman High School’s cheerleading squad for their hard work and dedication to their school and community.
The Coach of the Year Award will be presented at the cheer coaches’ conference in Baton Rouge in January 2013.
Each high school principal or athletic director can nominate his or her high school cheer coach for the Louisiana Coach of the Year Award. The deadline for submissions is Friday, Dec. 14, 2012.
The Annual Coaches’ Clinic is an educational session for Louisiana cheer coaches. The clinic is geared toward increasing safety awareness, providing network opportunities and stressing the importance of leadership and sportsmanship.
It includes a variety of workshops, a round table discussion and a chance to receive the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators (AACCA) safety certification. This clinic will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013.
And last but certainly not least, the LHSAA is excited to announce its second annual LHSAA State Cheer and Dance Competition, which will take place on December 1, 2012 at the Lake Charles Civic Center.
High school squads from around the state are invited to compete for titles and trophies. The competition is also a qualifier for UCA, UDA, NCA and NDA Nationals competitions to be held later in the school year.
For more information about the Spirit Program or other programs and events related to cheer, dance and pep squads, visit our website at www.LHSAA.org.