California makes competitive cheer an official sport

October 7, 2015 / Athletic Administration
Competitive cheer will become an official sport in California, beginning with the 2017-18 school year.

California Interscholastic Federation
California Interscholastic Federation

Gov. Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 949 on Wednesday, officially classifying competitive cheer as a sanctioned sport through the California Interscholastic Federation. The CIF plans to immediately begin developing policies for the implementation of the sport, gathering input from the California Department of Education, the cheerleading community and the NCAA cheerleading leadership, according to a news release from the CIF.

“The CIF is excited to add competitive cheer to our sports offerings,” said Roger Blake, executive director of the CIF. “We look forward to working with the California Department of Education to develop policy and standards allowing the student-athletes involved in competitive cheer to enjoy greater opportunities to display their athletic talents in a safe environment.

“One of the major goals in this process will be to develop guidelines for competitive cheer programs that our member schools can implement, meet the standards and be compliant with Title IX as defined by the United States Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights.”

Competition cheer will not be counted toward a school’s Title IX compliance unless the United States Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights deems competitive cheer compliant with its definition of a sport.

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