The Merrick PAL Travel Soccer Program is focused toward fielding a team comprised of the best players possible in each age category recognized by LIJSL (Long Island Junior Soccer League) and ENYYSA (Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association), subject to the Resident Policy found below. The program recognizes that LIJSL has many skill divisions and encourages as many teams in each age group to participate, given specific facility constraints. In each of these skill divisions, the objective is to promote team and individual growth, demonstrate good sportsmanship, compete successfully, have fun, and advance to the more skilled division. Merrick PAL and its assigned Police Officer Director, as a local unit of the Nassau County Police Activity League, is ultimately responsible for the oversight of all Merrick PAL programs and thus these Rules and Regulations are intended to adhere to the guidelines and principles set forth by the Nassau County Police Activity League and the Nassau County Police Department.
In connection with Merrick PAL Soccer’s mission to provide appropriate soccer teams and competition for the residents of the local community, we strive to give the children of the community (defined as living within the Bellmore Merrick Central High School District (the “District”)) the appropriate opportunity to play soccer. Thus, all rosters of Merrick PAL travel soccer teams should be structured to provide opportunities to play soccer to committed players residing in the District regardless of race, creed, or sex. Given such consideration, Merrick Travel Soccer team rosters should be comprised of at least 75% District residents. Teams which field rosters of less than 75% District residents may seek an exception to this policy by providing a written petition to the Travel Soccer Board by June 10 preceding the season for which this exception is sought, with appropriate support detailing the team’s individual circumstances. Such petition should include relevant support of the team’s continued commitment to PAL principles and the overall Merrick Travel Soccer mission. Teams which do not meet the resident policy criteria will not be registered by Merrick PAL without the Board’s approval of a team petition.
Age Group Birthdates
Age groups begin on August 1, and go through July 31 of the following year. Any player, who wants to play “up” beyond their age group, must apply in writing to the Vice President Soccer Operations no later than May 10 for the new U-10 travel teams and June 1 for all other age groups. The Merrick PAL Travel Soccer Board (MTSB) will review each letter and make a determination regarding the player’s application to try out an age group up. All registered players must show official proof of their birthdates to register with LIJSL.
If a team is not being fielded in the player’s appropriate age group, a player will receive permission to tryout for the age group above. Players will not be allowed to tryout for any team that is a 2-year age group difference. This rule will not apply to teams formed in the U17-19 age group category.
Selection of a New Travel Coach
Merrick PAL Soccer is seeking coaches who demonstrate an enthusiasm for volunteering their time, a sincere desire to help children develop a love for the game of soccer, uphold the principles and mission of Merrick PAL and the Merrick PAL Travel Soccer Program, and the ability to lead a committed group of children and parents.
Each year Merrick PAL Soccer will select head coaches for new travel teams based upon a properly completed resume, which is submitted to the Vice President Soccer Operations by May 15, and an in-person interview with the selection committee. Verbal requests or incomplete resumes will not be considered.
In the event that (2) or more coaches apply for a team, a committee will be formed to conduct the interview of each applicant before making the final decision. The committee will submit the name of the coach to the Merrick PAL Travel Soccer President and Travel Board for final approval. The committee will be formed by the Vice President Soccer Operations as the chairperson and other board members and/or PAL officials. The committee shall consist of no more than five persons. The committee’s decision will be rendered within twenty one (21) days.
All travel head coaches must have or obtain a NSCAA ‘C’ license within a year of their selection as a travel coach. When selecting coaches, soccer coaching licenses or certificates will carry weight in the decision making process.
No travel coach or adult supervisor, who has a LIJSL pass, shall be paid by the team they are coaching to train or perform any other function. Coaches, adult supervisors and members of the MTSB all serve on a volunteer basis.
The travel coach position for Merrick PAL Travel Soccer established teams will be reviewed every two years. However an established coach will not have to reapply for his/her team unless there is a challenge for the coaching position.
Coaches will recognize that they are role models for the players and shall portray themselves accordingly. The behavior and demeanor of any coach may be a subject of discipline and/or action at the discretion of the MTSB.
Fines & Game Misconduct
Coaches are responsible for the actions of the players on the field and the parents on the sidelines. Any infractions can be subjected to the rules established by the club or ENYYSA and LIJSL. All fines assessed to Merrick PAL Soccer by ENYYSA or LIJSL are the responsibility of the team and are to be paid within the time frame established by the MTSB. Fines include forfeits, red cards, failure to report scores, lost passes, etc. Failure to pay an assessed fine will prevent the team, coach or player from being registered for the next season.
Should a coach or player receive a red card during the game, you must notify the Vice President Soccer Operations within 24 hours. Coaches are responsible to attend the LIJSL arbitration hearing if requested and will be subject to any fines and/or suspension as per LIJSL rules. Moreover, a coach may be subject to further disciplinary action by the MTSB.
The head coach or a representative of each team must attend all required Merrick PAL Travel Soccer meetings as well as those required by LIJSL. If a league fine is assessed to the club for a team not attending a required LIJSL function, the fine will be paid for by the team. There will be a club fine of $50 for missing a required Merrick PAL Travel Soccer meeting.
Removal of a Travel Coach
MTSB is the only entity that can remove a travel coach from his/her team. Grounds for removal of a travel coach include but are not limited to:
- Any type of inappropriate physical contact with a team member, whether in anger or otherwise.
- Fraud or intentional misuse or misappropriation of team funds.
- A felony conviction.
- Intentional misrepresentation of credentials, such as licensing, coaching experience or other things deemed material.
- Overall conduct not in accordance with club policy.
In addition to the above, the following conduct or situations may, at the discretion of the MTSB be reviewed for possible termination:
- Inappropriate or abusive verbal conduct directed at a team member or parent.
- Inappropriate or abusive behavior towards a visiting team sideline, individual parent, or official.
- Use of alcoholic beverages and drugs at a Merrick PAL practice, game, scrimmage, or tournament.
All matters brought to the MTSB about a coach or team parent will be reviewed and any disciplinary action taken by the board will not be reversible. A coach or any individual who is associated with the club can have a disciplinary record filed against them, for up to two years. Any other investigated incident within the two year period will be punishable by removal of said individual by the club.
Scheduled Age Group Tryouts
Age group tryouts shall be posted on the Merrick PAL Soccer website (www.merrickpal.org) during the club spring registration period. Parents must read and sign the MTSB Parents Code of Ethics prior to the tryout.
In order for a player to be eligible, he/she must attend the tryout for the team they wish to play for. If a player cannot attend the tryout for a legitimate reason (i.e. sickness, religion, injury, etc.), the coach may receive permission from the Vice President for Soccer Operations to conduct an individual tryout with a parent or guardian present.
U10 Age Group Travel Tryouts:
The U10 travel tryouts will be conducted by an outside training organization and will provide a rating for each player. Decisions regarding placement of players will be made by the trainer(s). All players not selected for a U10 travel team will have the opportunity to return to the intramural program.
Any U10 player who is selected but not interested in playing for a specific travel team after his/her selection must notify the coach immediately of their intention not to participate. Any player who is selected by a specific team and is not interested in playing for that team forfeits the right to be considered for another team within the age group until all players from the entire age group have rendered their individual team selections.
The number of travel teams in the U10 age group will be based upon the number of players who tried out for the travel team age group and the availability of qualified coaches and facilities. Ratings of players will also determine if a team can be fielded.
U11-U12 Age Group Travel Tryouts:
The U11 through U12 travel tryouts will be conducted by the current team coaches and will be a combined tryout. The combined tryouts will take place at the same time(s) and location(s). The selection process will be scheduled over at least a two day period and players can be separated on the second day of tryouts.
The same team selection format will hold for all teams in this age group. Any player who is selected but not interested in playing for a specific travel team after his/her selection must notify the coach immediately of their intentions and he/she forfeits the right to be considered for another team within the age group until all players from the entire age group have made their team selection. Any outside player who registers for the club for the first time must be seen by the ‘A’ team coach before being selected by the ‘B’ or ‘C’ team in the age group.
U13 and Above Age Group Travel Tryouts:
For travel teams U13 and above, coaches can hold separate tryouts for the ‘A’ and ‘B’ teams for interested players. Any outside player who registers for the club for the first time must be seen by the ‘A’ team coach before being selected by the ‘B’ team in the group.
Team rosters and associated forms are the responsibility of the head coach. All forms must be filled out correctly and player/coaches passes must have the picture attached and signed. When the team is registered with LIJSL, players are registered for a full season and cannot be released from the team unless the player and a parent request a release. Releases must be given in written form and there will be no refunds of the travel registration fee after a team or player is registered.
Player/Adult Supervisor Passes
Passes are property of LIJSL. At the end of each playing season, the player and adult supervisor passes must be returned to the club. Coaches are required to obtain the ENYYSA Risk Management authorization before an adult supervisor pass will be issued. The risk management authorization will be good for a two year period. A fee must be paid to obtain this authorization.
Coaches should take into consideration the age of their players when planning the number of practices per week and the length of practice sessions. Coaches may allow time off in the summer when teams are fielded for the full year. Weather conditions should be taken into consideration during practices and players/coaches must leave the field immediately whenever lightning or thunder is present in the area.No team player is to be left at the field unattended following a practice or game. Coaches or an adult team supervisor are required to attend all practices, including a practice under the direction of a trainer.
Each player shall be entitled to 25% playing time over the course of the season in divisional and tournament competitions. State and League competition cups will be at the discretion of the coach/trainer. A coach may request a waiver from this requirement from the Vice President of Operations based upon disciplinary problems or poor attendance at practices.
A player within the Merrick PAL Travel Soccer Club may not play for another team within the club without permission of the player, parent(s), current coach and guest coach. This rule applies to all tournaments and league games, whether sanctioned by LIJSL or not. For guest players obtained outside Merrick PAL, the coach must follow established guidelines of LIJSL.
Any coach wishing to protest a game must contact the Vice President Soccer Operations and follow the LIJSL League, State Cup and Challenge Cup protest rules. All protests must contain the appropriate fee, which shall be paid for by the team within 48 hours, and the team must submit the appropriate forms.
LIJSL has established guidelines for rostered player transfers from one club to another club during the seasonal year. Within the Merrick PAL Travel Soccer program, player transfers from one team to another team within the club will follow the same waiting period guidelines established by LIJSL. The waiting period for player transfers is 10 business days from the day the LIJSL is notified in writing of a request for a player transfer. The MTSB reserves the right to waive this policy upon individual circumstances.
All coaches must notify the Vice President Soccer Operations or club President immediately when a player is injured during a game or practice. An initial injury report must be filed with the Vice President Soccer Operations via email within 72 hours of the injury. Once the club has been notified, coaches must then follow league-specific protocols for reporting an injury. LIJSL/ENYYSA and NYCSL/JSS reporting procedures are as follows:
- The Advance Notice of Injury form (CLICK HERE) must be completed by the Coach and faxed to the LIJSL league office (631-648-9025).
- NOTE: You have 90 days from date of injury to submit the claim form. For claims to be eligible for coverage you must seek medical attention within 60 days from the date of injury.
- LIJSL then verifies that the player is registered and that the injury occurred at a sanctioned ENYYSA event. Once verified, LIJSL approves and forwards to the ENYYSA State Office.
- ENYYSA receives the Advance Notice of Injury form from LIJSL, reviews and approves. The Claim Form is forwarded to the parent / guardian via e-mail. It is important that you include a current e- mail address on the form.
- The parent / guardian must complete the Claim Form and return to the ENYYSA State Office for processing. If the Claim Form is not returned to ENYYSA, a claim will not be filed with the Insurance carrier.
- ENYYSA forwards the Claim Form to the Insurance carrier.
- At this point, all inquiries should be directed toward the insurance carrier at 1-800-526-1379.
- Note: ENYYSA insurance is secondary insurance with a $500 deductible per occurrence.
- The SAY Soccer Incident Report form (CLICK HERE) must be completed by the Coach excluding the last two sections, INSURED and INSURED REPRESENTATIVE, and faxed to the JSS league office (516-686-0639).
- JSS will then process the report and SAY will provide additional information regarding the claim.
IMPORTANT: Should any player suffer a head injury during a practice or game, coaches and parents are advised to please refer to the U.S. Youth Soccer Concussion Procedure and Protocol (CLICK HERE) in order to help identify any potential signs or symptoms that a concussion may have occurred, and to help determine whether or not one should seek immediate medical attention.
Each travel team shall establish a team account at a bank selected by the team. Every travel team will be required to keep a log of all expenditures and collections. The board will require a copy of the account to be maintained and submitted to the club Treasurer if requested. Coaches shall make a good faith effort to inform the parents of players before tryouts what the anticipated team costs are to be for the year including team training fees, team equipment and uniforms(bags, training suits, etc.). The MTSB Treasurer may request that each team furnish the name of the bank, account name and account number for team accounts upon request. Additionally, the MTSB Treasurer has the right to review contracts entered into on behalf of a team (i.e., trainer’s contract) to verify that the terms are being adhered to.
Each team must provide the MTSB with the name of any trainer hired by the team before training commences for the seasonal year. A trainer must obtain a LIJSL trainer’s pass to be on the coaching sideline for any league game or competition. Trainers must show proof of liability insurance and must submit a copy to the Registrar for the seasonal year. A head coach should also maintain a copy for his/her files.
All travel teams are permitted to conduct fundraising activities during the seasonal year after first notifying the club and completing a club fundraising request form. The team must submit a fundraising request to the MTSB for approval fourteen days (14) prior to the fundraising event. The money raised may be used for tournament fees, player equipment, training fees and team supplies. The team will inform the club Treasurer of the monies collected after the fundraising event.
If a player leaves the team, the money in the account stays with the team. It is understood that the money is the team’s fund and does not stay with a particular player. The head coach will seek team approval for all purchases more than $100. If a team disbands, all monies still in the account revert back to the Merrick PAL Travel Soccer Club.
MTSB Travel Program Policies & Procedures
The program policies and procedures will be reviewed by the MTSB on an annual basis and changes will be highlighted. The board has the right to adjust the policies and procedures as needed to maintain a competitive program in LIJSL and ENYYSA. All matters can be reported to the MTSB by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.