NHS Cheerleading Constitution


Cheerleading Handbook ~ Coach Nadine Holohan


I. Coach’s contact Information:  call in absence or tardy

Coach Holohan’s classroom 221 (Nutrition room)

Emergencies cell 978-621-3960




II. Purpose of Clipper Cheerleading:

1.     Team Make-Up-

a)  Athletes may need to be selected to by a formal try-out procedure to participate in the

            NHS Cheerleading Program.

 b) The Cheerleading Program at NHS has been all-female, males are welcome to

            tryout for the squad.

 c) Scoring procedures will follow the state guideline, males will be scored form the co-ed score sheet


2.     Fall Season Schedule

a)       Three day camp and optional summer workouts to be on your own. 

b)   Practices begin in the summer pre-season.

                        c)    During the school year practices will generally be 4-5 times per week August- November.

                        d) *Closer to Color Day another practice may be added.

e) Practices generally start at 3/3:30-5/5:30 Do not make plans until after 6:30. When there

            is rain, the athletic program follows a shared gym-rain schedule and our time change.


 III. Cheer Information

1. Fitness Schedule -
                        All members of the NHS Program will be required to participate in cardiovascular workouts

            and strength training workouts during practice and to supplement their own physical fitness,

            if needed, outside of scheduled practice time.


2. Games & Performances

            a) NHS Cheerleaders are required to cheer at all home and away football/Home Basketball

            b) Cheerleaders are required to cheer at tournament games

            c) The team will perform at pep rallies and Color Day type events. 

3. Game vs Competition

·                                       More than the expected number of competition athletes will be chosen to cheer at varsity football games.

                        This allows more athletes a chance to participate and practice at cheerleading skills.

  • Game athlete = JV status (Not a set rule that JV cheerleaders fill in for injured Varsity cheerleaders. There are many variables that need to work out for this to happen.) At any given time a game athlete may be asked to fill for a competition athlete.
  • Competition athlete = Varsity status
  •  Varsity Letter - In order to earn a varsity letter
    • 1st be an athlete in good standing (have the NHS academic eligibility, adhere to NHS and team specific attendance policies and cheer handbook expectations)  
    • Secondly they must completely participate in at least one competition. Being chosen for the competition team does not automatically earn the athlete a varsity letter (things such as injuries and absences can affect this).
  • Anyone who has earned a varsity letter the previous year but does not compete this season they will NOT lose their varsity status.


 IV. Attendance:

*Excused absences: Illness, Bereavement, Religious, family wedding 

*Unexcused misses are equivalent to a skip

No misses with-in one month of competition. 

  •  You are a part of an educational institution budget your time wisely
  • Your presence is non-negotiable.  Schedule other activities around our practice and game schedule.
  • Practice purposely starts at 3:15/3:30, meet with teachers and project group members while still on campus. Come see me if you know you need to meet with a teacher.
  •  Tardiness is unacceptable. Be to the designated practice area dressed and ready 5 minutes prior to the scheduled start time. 
  • Club sports & All-Star cheerleading -MA Bona-fide member rule states that a school committed athlete must put that team first. Leaving practice, games, events for any other outside sport will result in suspension.
  • Observed Religious Holidays are excused - Church conferences, seminars, retreats are not excused absences from practice
  • Excessive misses - you will be placed on probation or removed from the team.
  • WINTER TEAM: After the second unexcused* miss during the month of December you will be benched from the first game. Every absence at that point on you will be benched at the upcoming game. After 4 unexcused* misses you will be placed on probation.(All absences need to be discussed ahead of time with Coach Holohan)


  V.. Injuries: 

Follow these steps: All athletes should want to participate in their chosen sport. If there is something just not feeling right don't ignore it.Your health is important.

    There needs to be documented treatment. 

  1. See NHS Athletic Trainer
  2. Follow their protocol
  3. Alert Coach of protocol
  4. A medical note should come after the trainer 


 VI.Fundraising & Community Service

            a)   All NHS Cheerleaders will be required to participate in fundraising activities.

            b)  All money raised will subsidize extra costs of the program

             c)  All NHS cheerleaders will be required to participate is the one mandatory community service event

                        to take place each season.

Fall -Pediatric Cancer –shoe lace sales

Winter – Toys for Tots


VII. Rules & Expectations - games, fundraisers, practices, community events all rules are mandatory.

 A) Expectations-

  •  Be on time (dressed & ready before the start time)
  • Be dressed –hair up, practice clothes or uniform, sneakers tied and on your feet.
  •  Be taped prior to start/arrival time.
  • Phone usage at practice is not allowed
  • Use the rest room prior to practice
  • Make a commitment- keep the commitment
  • Be coach-able, listen and learn
  • Don’t use excuses and argue
  • Believe in your team
  • Come to my classroom at least one hour prior if you will be missing or tardy.
  • Always give 100%.
  • Don’t be afraid of change or hard work
  • Follow all rules without being reminded by your coach. 
  • Our practice time in the gym is precious. We will not waste this time with things that could and should be done before our scheduled time.


 B) Rules –

 1.      If it is on the schedule it is mandatory.

 2.      See coach about tardy or absences 

 3.      We follow all MSSAA, NHS and National Safety / Sportsmanship rules and regulations

 4.      No jewelry 

 5.      Team hairstyle for games- TBD each week

 6.      Official full uniform – No other pieces, colors or deviations

 7.      Light make-up, no long nails or nail polish- for games

 8.      Cheerleading sneakers only, coach approved sneakers only

 9.  Alert coach if you are under a doctor’s care or are on medication.


 C. Consequences –

  • Any partial or whole missed practices/event = partial, complete bench from next game
  • No in-person warning  = benched
  • No in-person warning about an absence = immediate probation possible dismissal from team
  • Blatant skip - dismissal from the team or varsity level athletes will be placed on JV team
  • Missing uniform (top, skirt or shorts and cheer sneakers) = bench
  • All other broken rules or unsportsmanlike like behavior will depend on the occurrence and will be decided upon by the coach = benching, alternate team* or dismissal
  • Adding onto these tardies or absences you will be placed on probation and on the game team to an immediate dismissal form the team.
  • No misses (please come watch if you can, if ill) within one month to competition- non-negotiable.

 ***When you are ill you need time to recuperate, for your physical benefit if you miss one of our weekly practices you may sit the next game. 

 Alternate Team=Not cheering at/in games out of half-time and competition routine. In order to be reconsidered for Game team you must attend 3 consecutive cheer events i.e. games, practices or fundraisers


  D. Questions/meeting with coach:

1. Email the coach first nholohan@newburyport.k12.ma.us

2. A meeting will be set up as soon as we both have available time.


“Do what you love doing, but keep the love in what you do!”


“Be the first to arrive and the last to leave”