The Ohio High School Athletic Association announced Tuesday that it approved a recommendation from Executive Director Doug Ute that membership dues will be collected from schools beginning with the 2021-22 school year.
Each member high school will contribute $50 per OHSAA sanctioned sport in which the school participates, according to a release from the organization. Total dues will range from $300 per school to $1,300, depending on the number of OHSAA-sanctioned sports in which a school is participating.
“First, I want to thank our Board of Directors for unanimously approving my recommendation,” Ute said in the release. “I also have received favorable feedback from the majority of the administrators with whom I have conversed at our member schools. Levying membership dues does not change our mission, which is to serve our member schools and enrich interscholastic opportunities for students.
“We traditionally have relied on tournament ticket sales for about 80% of our revenue. That financial model has not been sustainable, and the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly not helped. Levying membership dues will give us a steady line of income since many of our other lines are variable, and it will help us build a new, more sustainable revenue model. That model, which will help ensure our long-term sustainability, will be a combination of a wider variety of income streams — including these dues — and continued better management of our expenses.”
The OHSAA Board of Directors approved the measure 9-0 on Monday. The dues will be reviewed annually by an OHSAA Finance Committee and any modifications will be recommended to the Board by Ute.
In the future, dues will not exceed $100 per sport.
According to the release, member schools will no longer pay any tournament entry fees, bowling lineage fees, golf green fees or wrestling weight management fees. The membership due is all-inclusive.
No membership dues will be levied against member seventh and eighth grade schools.
“We will continue to be open and transparent with our member schools about our financial situation,” Ute said. “If we are able to adjust dues in the future, we will look to do so.
“I want to sincerely thank all of our school administrators for their work and efforts in helping to provide participation opportunities for our student-athletes during these uncertain times, and we appreciate the support they have given us in continuing to conduct our tournaments.”
During the 2020-21 school year, Bryan High School offered 21 OHSAA-sanctioned boys and girls sports. Fairview offered 14, Edgerton and Montpelier 13, Hilltop 12, and Edon, North Central and Stryker 11.