Code of Conduct and Essential Understandings for Member Schools
This document presents the mutual understandings of all ISL Heads of School. It is to be shared
by ISL Athletic Directors annually with all coaches, who are then expected to support these
values with their teams, both through their actions and in their expectations for player and team
conduct. All ISL coaches and players must remember that in all athletic contests they represent
all schools in the League.
The motto of the Independent School League presents the guiding and shared philosophy of our
community of distinct secondary schools:
Striving together through athletic competition to achieve the highest degree of integrity,
sportsmanship, fair play and mutual respect in preparation for good citizenship and leadership in
Athletics in the Independent School League are conducted according to the following Code of
The ISL is proud of the behavior and sportsmanship displayed by its players, coaches and fans.
We value spirited and fair play as well as positive support for our players and teams. In order to
ensure that our expected level of decorum continues each season and each game, we ask that all
members of the ISL continually renew their efforts to abide by the ideals of our league.
Players and coaches shall at all times represent themselves and their schools with honor, proper
conduct and good sportsmanship. They shall understand that competitive rivalries are encouraged
but that disrespect for opponents is unsportsmanlike and lessens the value of the rivalries. They
shall confine the competitiveness of the game to the field, and in particular behave properly on
the sidelines and in the locker rooms both before and after games. Players and coaches shall
comply fully with the rulings of the officials. In no way, either by voice, action or gesture, shall
they demonstrate dissatisfaction with the decisions made. They must never forget that they
represent their school.
ISL schools will not tolerate at their contests any spectator, either student or adult, whose
behavior is disrespectful toward players, officials, coaches or other spectators. Nor will ISL
schools permit any type of behavior that either detracts from the proper conduct of the game or
disadvantages a player or team.
In order to bolster our deeply valued association and strengthen our commitment to our motto and
code of conduct, ISL Heads of School endorse the following essential understandings:
1. All ISL schools share the perspective that the experiences inherent in team-building and athletic competition strengthen our students' character. The quest for excellence that is part of their daily classroom experience should also be manifest on our playing fields. Indeed, our playing fields are an extension of our classrooms and need to represent the best values of our institutions.
All athletes, coaches and spectators from ISL schools will at all times demonstrate respect for each other by cheering for their own teams, but not against the other; by not tolerating profanity or profane actions; by opposing any sort of "trash-talk" or attempts to humiliate opposing players or teams in any manner, both during games and away from games (verbally,physically, or through digital means). School heads and athletic directors will work to uphold these idealson a school-wide basis involving fans as well as participants.
2. All ISL schools and their coaches understand that all league and sport-specific rules and regulations regarding competition are to be upheld both in spirit and in letter. In particular, all ISL schools respect, in word and in action, the League rules regarding the ineligibility of post-graduates and the commitment to award financial aid/scholarship grants only on the basis of students’ demonstrated financial need.
3. All ISL coaches must be firmly committed as educators to teaching not only competitive skills but also the attitudes necessary to achieve the highest standards of respect and sportsmanship articulated by the league. Coaches must take the lead in limiting lop-sided competitions, preventing humiliating behavior or playing tactics, congratulating opposing players, coaches and teams at the end of games, and reinforcing a commitment to fair play in all circumstances. Every school in the league should field teams with confidence that every coach is as concerned with the health and safety of opposing players as with his or
4. All ISL member schools will adhere conscientiously to league agreements regarding admissions, recruitment, and financial aid principles, procedures and awards.
5. All ISL school heads and athletic directors commit to communicate openly and directly with one another and to address concerns effectively and cooperatively when and if they arise.