In the latest dispute between parents and the Utah High School Activities Association (UHSAA), Ronald and Susan Mika, parents of Eric Mika, are suing the UHSAA for denying Eric the opportunity to play basketball this year, even though he transferred schools for personal, non-athletic reasons.
This case is one among a plethora demonstrating the irrationality of the UHSAA’s transfer rule for student-athletes and general administrative approach in addressing transfers and eligibility. We could recall numerous arguments to support this assertion, but, above all, we should remember that primarily parents – not the state, not public schools and certainly not the UHSAA – should determine where their children attend school and for what reasons.
It is troubling that the UHSAA, a private organization, has almost unbridled power to regulate access to tax-funded programs. In the case of student transfers, the UHSAA has authority, and its rules require it, to meddle in the private lives of Utah families, essentially putting them on trial under a guilty-until-proven-innocent prosecution system. The tables will now turn as the UHSAA is faced with defending itself against the Mikas in a real court of law.
We have written extensively on why and how the transfer rule for student-athletes should be modified so students and their families can take advantage of the best educational opportunities available to them. Click on the following links to read more:
- UHSAA rule slams door on opportunities for student
- Testimony in Support of SB 53 (Eligibility for Interscholastic Activities in Secondary Schools)
- UHSAA transfer rule unfairly burdens Utah’s student-athletes
- Open Transfer Rule for Student-Athletes: Six Myths Debunked
- Mero Moment: UHSAA Revisited
- Policies in Conflict: Open Enrollment and Student Athletes
- On the Relationship of the UHSAA to the State of Utah