HEAT Participant Eligibility Policies

51% Homeschool Requirement

HEAT strives to serve homeschool families and has adopted a requirement that students “must maintain at least 51% of his/her education from classes that meet the homeschooling definition.” Homeschool is defined as “education that is parent-directed and done at home.” HEAT Athletes are expected to maintain a reasonable course load based on the student’s academic abilities and maintain good academic standing.

There are many other nuances to eligibility requirements which HEAT student athletes must follow to avoid disqualifying themselves, their team and the entire HEAT organization.  Parents and student athletes should be familiar with all eligibility requirements for each sport before registering for HEAT sports.


Reclassification (Super-Senior/Fifth Year Senior)

There are many factors that come into consideration with regard to reclassifying students. Those issues include considering the eligibility requirements of other teams we face during the year (NCHBC, TAPPS, UIL, etc.) and the priority HEAT places on academics and athletics, in that order. After considering these factors, HEAT has determined that the best policy for our organization is, beginning the 9th grade year, each student athlete will progress one grade level for each year he/she participates in HEAT sports. A student is allowed four years of HS eligibility, barring severe extenuating circumstances, such as medical, academic, or family circumstances which prevent a student from satisfactorily completing an academic year. Unlike college redshirt practices, high school sports do not permit students to save a year of eligibility due to injury. The legitimacy of these circumstances and how they affect the student’s eligibility will require consideration and approval by the HEAT board and the coach. HEAT does not reclassify students for athletic reasons.  Even if the parents determine the student needs one more year of academic instruction after his/her fourth year of high school sports (the “12th grade/senior” year), the student will not be allowed to play another year.


“Playing Up”

Middle school students in grades 6-8 will be assigned to a middle school team based on their age, grade level, and/or skill level. Likewise, high school students in grades 9-12 will be assigned to a high school team (Freshman, JV, or Varsity) based on their age, grade level, skill level, and number of players available and necessary to field a team.

Students in the 8th grade may be invited by a coach to play up on a high school team if the student’s participation is necessary to reasonably field a team. Middle school players may also be considered for the high school team if there are insufficient numbers to reasonably field a middle school team. These years of competition will not count against the student’s high school eligibility.

Any request to play up and how it affects player eligibility will require consideration and approval by the HEAT board and the coach. All decisions will be based on what is best for the HEAT program overall.


Maximum Age of Eligibility

Students who have been held back at any point of their academic career will not be allowed to participate in high school sports if they turn 19-years-old prior to August 1st of the student’s senior year.


Transfer Student Classification

Tyler HEAT will honor the grade classification of other sports organizations. If a student plays as a 9th grader in year X for another organization and transfers to HEAT in year X+1, that student shall be classified as a 10th grader in Tyler HEAT. Any prior participation with HEAT may be taken into consideration.


Other Situations Requiring Board Approval

Any other situations regarding age and eligibility not covered by this document shall be reviewed by the board and decided upon through consultation with the coach and the board.


Policy Approved 3/24/2024 by Home Education Athletic Team's Board of Directors