·      You must inform your local District/State Contest Manager you are doing an in-person contest. You must also notify them of what other schools will be a part of this contest. No more than 8 other schools will be allowed together. 

·      If additional schools beyond your local school are at your in-person contest, please consider using cohorts/pods for performances. This will alleviate mixing school contacts. 

·      The contest center (s) should take place in a large space (s) such as a gym or theatre space.  The indoor space being used must first be cleared with the proper administration. Cleaning procedures must be followed per CDC guidance. Occupancy in each center should be limited to ½ hour.  Consider switching from one larger room to another after each ½ hour of time in a performance space to allow for effective cleaning procedures.

·      Gymnasiums, field houses, all-purpose rooms, multi-purpose spaces, music rooms, etc. can be used as performance spaces and warm-up areas for student participants and/or spectators as long as these spaces allow for social distancing.

·      Facemasks or face coverings are encouraged for ALL students, coaches, judges, and spectators.  Per Governor mandate of Nov. 10th they are required for spectators.

·      Coaches are responsible for educating all attendees and ensuring social distancing is maintained between students. This means ensuring additional spacing is available so that students remain spaced out. No congregating of participants should occur.  Social distancing must be followed.  

·      Signs should be posted prominently indicating no one should attend or participate in contest if they currently exhibiting symptoms or have been in contact with anyone with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis in the last 14 days.

·      Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 or above or other signs of illness shall not be allowed to participate.  Temperatures should be checked before coming to the in-person event.

·      Anyone with symptoms of illness will not be allowed to perform.

·      A clear plan should be in place if someone is or becomes sick.  Students (through consultation with their parents/guardians) should be referred to their health care provider. Public health officials should be notified.

·      Coaches should be knowledgeable of their students with pre-existing health conditions and work with school health officials to take additional precautions as needed.

·      Coaches are encouraged to include messages about behaviors that help reduce the spread of COVID-19 when communicating with students and parents/guardians. 

·      A list of all participating individuals should be kept for contest in case contact tracing needs to be facilitated through the IDPH.

·      Confidentiality in the reports of any staff or student COVID-19 illness should be maintained. Contact your local administration and public health agency directly to report COVID-19 exposure.

·      Participants in a high-risk category should avoid coming to the in-person contest.  This includes students, coaches, judges and spectators.  If a student has an issue, the virtual contest can be used in conjunction with the in-person contest. This “hybrid” situation may be used for contest.

·      Students must practice social distancing as much as possible. When preparing for a presentation, if a coach needs to move within the six-foot area to facilitate the contest, they should do so briefly and then resume social distancing promptly. If a chair or prop (s) or any other equipment is used by a performer (s) that equipment must be sanitized between each performance.

·      Coaches are encouraged to select versatile material that allows for recording of a videoconference performance and/or material that allows for physical distancing in-person.  Coaches should consult publishers regarding copyright permissions for online streaming for purposes of adjudication in case the in-person contest must instead go virtual.

·      Students, coaches, judges, and spectators should wash hands regularly and/or utilize hand sanitizer.  Special attention should be given to hand washing/sanitization anytime a surface is touched.  Coaches should frequently remind students not to touch their faces with their hands.

·      All participants including students, coaches, judges, and spectators are encouraged to provide their own hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer should also be available on-site for use if needed.

·      Judges should be at least 6 feet apart from each other and at least 15 feet away from the performer (s).  Spectators observing the performance must practice social distancing and be at least 10 feet from the judge (s) and behind the judge (s).

·      Limit the audience so that it can be seated in a socially distant manner, or the allowable limit as determined by the state or local health department. If the local policy states no spectators are allowed, then the local school has that option not to allow spectators.

·      After the performance, the student (s) should walk to the exit area-- not walking past the judge (s) or the spectators.

·      Spectators are at the discretion of the local school policy.  If a host school allows spectators, spectators are encouraged to wear masks or facial coverings as well as maintain 6 feet social distancing throughout the entire event.  NOTE:  Some sites may not permit spectators. 

·      Students should arrive at the contest venue already in contest attire/costumes. 

·      Students must bring their own water/beverage to consume during and after performances.

·      Concessions do not need to be offered. If concessions are offered, guidelines offered by the IDPH should be followed.

·      Car-pooling to or from the contest is not advised.  Follow IDPH guidelines for bus travel.

·      The in-person contest at the local school could be just one school or as many as 8 other schools from the region.  Please use “pods” and “cohorts” for scheduling the contest.

·      Establish firm arrival times for participants if more than one school is at your local contest.  Participants who arrive early must stay in their bus/vehicles until the appointed performance time.  Hosts may designate a home room or “waiting area” for participants. Multiple schools should not be scheduled with overlapping performance times. Pods/cohorts should be used for each separate school’s performances.

·      Contests may be streamed given the appropriate licenses have been obtained.  Schools may use their preferred streaming service.  It is the responsibility of each individual school to secure all appropriate copyrights and pay all royalties necessary for streaming and performing.  The IHSSA is not responsible for copyright or royalties of competing schools. 

·      All schools in attendance of the local in-person contest must follow the guidelines and policies stated by the local host school.

·      Students, coaches, judges and spectators are encouraged to wash their clothing immediately upon returning to home.




·      Each coach must register and enter their events and students on the IHSSA website.  

·      The local site will find and pay the certified IHSSA judge for their local in-person contest.  Entry fee for the contest will be reduced to ½ of the total if you are hiring the judge.  If you are not hiring the judge and participate at the contest site, you will pay the full entry fee.

·      Each local contest will hire their own judge (s). All judges must be certified through IHSSA certified training. Each site will send in their judge (s) listing to the District/State Contest Manager. Clear communication about the contest format and the protocols should be sent to judges in advance of the contest.  Only 1 judge for District contest including 1-Act play and 3 judges need to be used for state.

·      A judges meeting video will be available for the local site to show their judge (s). This will be posted on the IHSSA web site.

·      Ballots and comment sheets should be prepared ahead of time for each judge and that packet will be given to the judge before the entire contest begins.  This packet should be sanitized before it is given to the judge.  No comment sheet will ever be handed from the performer to the coach and then to the judge.  Those procedures should all be done in advance.  

·      All drawing events materials will be sent to the District and the State Contest Managers. In turn, your local contest site will request those draws and they will be sent to you for your local site presentation.

·      District and State results for events should be reported to the original Contest Manager and contest site you are assigned to by the State IHSSA Office.

·      All-State nomination ballots (from State Contest) should be in that same packet of materials given to the judge before the contest day begins.  The judge should send the All-State nominations to the IHSSA State Office after that contest event.