St. Paul, MN – January 22nd, 2024 – Following Minnesota Hockey’s January 20-21, 2024 Winter Meetings, it was announced today that rule change modifications with regards to school waivers for Youth and Girls hockey players in Minnesota will be adopted and go in to effect prior to commencement of the 2024-2025 hockey season. These changes are statewide and will be implemented across all of Minnesota Hockey’s (13) Districts and (130) plus member Associations.
According to Minnesota Hockey President, Steve Oleheiser, “The most recent rule modifications to our existing waiver process(es) are the direct result of a changing landscape and the need to continue supporting our Districts and Associations who are the backbone of our community based developmental model we’re so fortunate to have here in the great State of Hockey. This modification provides some balance, stability and certainties to both families and local Associations as well as preserving our discretionary waiver process that allows Associations and Districts to address unique and/or extraordinary circumstances on an individual case-by-case basis as they may arise.”.
The rule modification allows players the ability to waive into a Minnesota Hockey Association (outside their Association of Residence) whose boundaries incorporate the school in which that player is enrolled and attending. This waiver must now occur prior to the start of the player’s first year of Squirts or 10U level. Should a player stop attending school within that association’s boundaries, they will revert to their Association of residence for participation. Players who have not obtained a school attendance waiver prior to being eligible for Squirts or 10U, may only play outside their association of residence by obtaining a discretionary waiver.
Any player previously granted a school-based waiver prior to the changes adopted by Minnesota Hockey at the January 20-21, 2024 Winter Meetings will be “Grandfathered” in and allowed to continue to play in the association of school attendance where the player attended at the time of receipt of the waiver.
For the official rule change(s), see highlighted below:
Youth Rules and Regulation Change
3. With the exception of Junior Gold and 19U Players, prior to a player’s first year of Squirts or 10U a Mandatory Waiver shall be granted to any player in good standing other than a Mite or 8U and under, without conditions except as described below, who wishes to participate in the MH association whose boundaries incorporate the school in which the player is enrolled and is attending, as follows:
b. Players waived based on school choice shall be deemed to be members of their Association of School Attendance and shall have full rights and privileges accorded to all members of that association, including voting rights. (Exception – see “Changing Schools” below.)
c. Players receiving a waiver based on school attendance shall register with their Association of School Attendance for as long as they continue to attend that school (including the first year). If they stop attending school in that association’s area, they revert to their Association of Residence for participation or waiver.
d. If a player has obtained a waiver based on this section, they shall be allowed to continue to play with their Association of School Attendance. If a player has not obtained a waiver based on school attendance prior to being eligible for Squirts or 10U, they may only play outside of their Association of Residence by obtaining a discretionary waiver.
e. Any player granted a school-based waiver prior to the changes adopted by Minnesota Hockey at the January 20-21, 2024 meetings will be allowed to continue to play in the Association of school attendance where the player attended at the time of receipt of the waiver.