Coaching Documents and Resources

Hey, just a quick question for any college or even high school coaches. As a head coach, what type of coaching documents do I need to have? For example, practice plans, parent form, player contract, etc…

I would assume you would want the following:

  • PHYSICAL EXAM FORM- pretty standard stuff. This form is issued prior to your season and mandates a physical exam by a qualified medical person. Be sure to qualify what medical person is acceptable, to administer the exam and sign it, like PA, MD, Nurse Practitioner, RN, LPN, etc.
  • MEDICAL INFORMATION CARD FOR PLAYER – this is usually a card that itemizes important medical information in the event the player is injured and requires medical attention. These cards should be kept by the head coach or an assigned assistant. In every case, this is confidential information and should be treated as such. These card are never accessible to the general public.
  • CORI forms, signed and completed in accordance with your state’s authority that governs such applications/compliance. In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts here’s what’s can be involved:
    By the way, the collection and filing of these forms shouldn’t be delegated to just anybody. Strict confidentiality is the requirement for management of this responsibility.
  • STUDENT ATHLETE HANDBOOK – every student athlete should have in writing the policies and procedures that govern eligibility, conduct on and off the field, when the season starts and team attendance expectations, fees and charges if any that are expected.
  • PERSONAL PROPERTY EXCLUSIONS FORM – personal property such as jewelry, cellphones, laptops, clothing, bats, gloves, protective equipment, and the like are brought to play at the owner’s expense and risk.
  • EXCLUSION OF PERSONAL TRANSPORTATION FORM – student athletes should NOT bring their personal cars to practice and games. The tendency to arrive and leave at will, damage to their cars from playing action and even vandelisum can be troublesome. Another issue with personal transportation can arise when breakdowns and car trouble leaves people on school property long after curfew policy hours.
  • WAIVER FORMS, limiting your organization’s liability for things relating to your actions, the actions of others, and on-field playing scenarios. The organization’s insurance agency or the school board or the official league’s policy regarding such matters should be addressed and followed to the letter.
  • CERTIFICATES OF INSURANCE from private party’s insurance agent (parents and volunteers) if they transport anyone associated with your organization in connection with your organization’s activities.
  • BOSTER CLUBS- can assist you and your organization with fund raising and other activities. You might even be given a checkbook as part of their support. Make sure your liability for monies in your possession is outlined in writing – don’t go into this business with verbal comments.
  • PLAYER PERFORMANCE EVALUATION FORMS for player selection, by primary position and secondary position. Make something up yourself that serves your purpose – not all things to all people. You don’t have to do this, unless a problem comes up later that you’re accused of playing favorites by parents with clout.
  • EQUIPMENT INVENTORY SHEETS – you’re going to receive equipment in a variety of condition and value. Make sure you itemize everything, take pictures of what it looks like, make an appraisal of what you see and who is given what to use. Perishable items like rosin bags, baseballs, baseline chalk, even grass seed and the like should have a record of how much and why they were consumed. Don’t assume and be careless on these items. When squabbles occur – and they will, this stuff will be on the list of how to nail you when you least expect it by the petty people looking for someone to blame for something.
  • HAZMAT DOCUMENTS – if you’re in charge of chemicals of any kind – bleach, fertilizer, insect spray, etc., make sure your qualified, or have access to the qualified person(s) who know how to store, handle, and dispense such items. Also make sure you are aware of the proper procedures in place to handle spills, cleanup, and especially first aid for those who come in contact with HAZMAT materials. The documents associated with the above should be in a book that’s clearly marked SOP FOR HANDLING HAZMAT MATERIAL.
  • REPORTING FORMS FOR GAMES PLAYED – there are official scorebooks that your league will require. Don’t allow just anybody to be the administrator of these. Find someone and PAY THEM a reasonable amount to keep score. A simple thing – yes, but priceless down the road when there’s disputes of any kind.
  • ATTENDANCE FORMS FOR POLICE/EMT/FIRE – sometimes you’ll be expected to keep track of those paid municipal police and fire personnel, and sometime EMT that are on standby. Get acquainted with these forms ASAP and who does what, when they report, where are they, how long to do they stay and why. You’ll find some people will actually be NO SHOWS, but expect to be paid anyway. Don’t let this slip under the radar, let somebody be in charge of this that you trust, and is mature enough to know how serious this is. If there is an altercation and anyone in your organization is involved, if there’s no security around and your organization was in charge of paying someone that got paid –but was never there, you’re looking at trouble.
  • UTILITY USAGE RECORD FORMS – if you’re responsible for turning on and shutting off field lights, parking markers and such, you might have to fill out a municipal utility usage form. This form enables the utility company to bill your organization. No forms might generate a flat fee that’s very expensive.
  • UMPIRE ATTENDANCE FORMS-if umpires are to be paid based on their attendance, you might have to keep a running log, usually as part of your scorekeeper’s duties. Some systems have a two part ticket. The original stays with you and is submitted to the person or office responsible for disbursements, a copy is given to the umpire as his/her record.
  • INJURY REPORT FORM – if an accident occurs, this form usually records the witnessed event, who got hurt, any evacuation to a hospital, EMT’s administering assistance, and so forth.
  • VENDOR BUSINESS FORMS – if your organization has vendors serving food, souvenirs, programs and the like, you might be getting a percentage of their GROSS SALES, never their net sales. Vendors should have a record of the total take during an event on your official vendor form that covers such revenue.
  • GATE RECEIPTS – if your organization charges admission, the easiest what to account for admissions is with a ticket stub system. Start with recording the ticket start number, found on the number ticket, and then record the ending ticket stub sold. This way you have a record of how much money you should be depositing in the bank.
  • BANK RECORDS – if you’re in charge of a checkbook, deposits and bank statement reconciliations make sure the forms that you have allow you to do all of the heretofore mentioned. Keep track of your administration – this responsibility can get out of hand pronto if you’re not a paper person.

I am not privilege to the high school or college environment with respect to dugout paperwork, tracking records and the like, so what I outlined in my earlier post is the best I could do to help you.

Thank you so much! I’m currently playing in college, however I served as an assistant coach at my high school the last two years when I was playing at my JUCO before I transferred. I just never had the chance to sit down with my head coach and get the information. I’m trying to compose a binder of information I will need so I can be prepared for when the time comes for me to take over a program.

Some coaches leave and with little if any paper trail of what they did, when and how. On the other hand, some schools and organizations are very well organized and have procedures in documented form and should be followed to the letter.

The reasons for following what’s be done before is to have a pattern of consistency, follow through and overall fairness with the reputation of the coaching process. Changes in anything, brings questions and can distract from your work.

Like I mentioned earlier, I’m not privileged to the high school or college environment, but from a business standpoint, being consistent from one coaching program to the next, is to neither compliment or negate the program that you’re taking over. On the other hand, if you see that improvements can be made in certain areas, do it gradually. The last thing that you want is to have the question asked … “why didn’t he (prior coach) do that?” Or… the question putting you under the microscope by asking you …“We’ve never done that before… do you know what you’re doing?”

I wish you the best with your future prospect as Skipper of that program.