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2020 NCJLA Certified Coach Rules and Enforcement


Only an NCJLA Certified coach with a valid and visible coach's card may stand with the team and coach during an NCJLA game.
If a coach does not have the card, but has a legible photocopy or picture of it on their mobile phone accompanied with a valid photo ID, that person may participate as a coach.  But the team is penalized a technical foul/green card and possession is awarded to the opposing team in lieu of the opening faceoff (boys) or in lieu of the opening draw, a free position is given to the opponent at the center line (girls).
Any coach who does not have their NCJLA coach’s certification card or a legible copy or picture of it on their phone along with a photo ID must leave the team’s side of the field and move to the spectator’s side.  He/she may not coach from the spectator’s side of the field.
Any argument with an official can result in a penalty or foul up to and including an ejection/red card.
A team may enlist an NCJLA certified coach from the same club or another club to serve as head coach for that game; however, the temporary coach is responsible for certifying that all of the team’s players are equipped to play per rule.
If a team does not have an NCJLA certified coach, the game will end in a forfeit 1-0 in favor of the opposing team.  No scrimmage will be allowed.  
If a team has only one NCJLA certified coach and that coach is ejected from the game that has already started, the game ends in a forfeit 1-0 in favor of the opposing team.  

Requirements Overview


The NCJLA reviews the following five requirements for every coach and assistant coach and issues laminated “NCJLA Certified Coach” cards that coaches are required to wear on a lanyard around their necks while on the field for games.


1.     Cleared background check*
2.     PCA online course or workshop
3.     US Lacrosse Level 1 online course
4.     US Lacrosse membership
5.     Signed Coaches Code of Conduct
6.     Passed Age Level Rules Test - 

Officials verify that every coach on the sidelines has their NCJLA Certified Coach card at the beginning of each game.  No “NCJLA Certified Coach” card, no standing on sidelines during games. 

The NCJLA recommends all head coaches be US Lacrosse Certified.  In order to be US Lacrosse Certified, NCJLA coaches need to meet all NCJLA Certification requirements PLUS attend an in-person US Lacrosse Level 1 Clinic and be processed by US Lacrosse.  Learn more: US Lacrosse Certification.

NCJLA Requirements Detail
1. Cleared Background Check*
NCSI is valid for one or two years, depending on contract, other services vary
US Lacrosse and the NCJLA recommend the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI).  Other equivalent services are acceptable for NCJLA Certification.  To be US Lacrosse certified, coaches will need the NCSI clearance. US Lacrosse has negotiated reduced fees with NCSI for local lacrosse programs.  For more information from US Lacrosse on NCSI services, click here.  When reporting an NCSI background check clubs are to list the expiration date rather than the completion date.  

*Coaches under the age of 18 are not required to undergo a background check.

2. PCA 
One-time requirement
Coaches may take the PCA online course or in-person workshop, “Double Goal Coach: Coaching for Winning and Life Lessons.”

3. US Lacrosse Level 1 Online Course
One-time requirement
All coaches must complete a free US Lacrosse Level 1 online course, unless the coach has coached at the CIF (or equivalent from another state), collegiate, or post-collegiate level. 

4. US Lacrosse Membership
Renew annually, and valid through the end of the season
Go to http://www.uslacrosse.org to establish or renew membership.

5. Signed Coaches Code of Conduct 
One-time requirement
Coaches must sign and submit this Coaches Code of Conduct form to their club administrator for their records.


6. Passed Age Level Rules Test  - 

One-time requirement

Coaches must take and pass a US Lacrosse rules test for the age and gender they coach.  Send the certificate of completion to your club administrator for their records.

Click here for instructions on how to find and take the tests.


Helpful hints before taking test:

a) You will need your US Lacrosse Member ID to sign-on for the test.
a) Please listen carefully to the directions for completing the test. The audio portion is very helpful.
b) The test has multiple modules which are called "Rule 1", "Rule 2", and so on.  Each module has 1 or more multiple choice questions.  You must pass each module to earn your certificate.
c) The "Back to Menu" button will allow you to access the modules you have not yet completed.
d) Read each question carefully.
e) Read all choices before selecting your answer.


How to Submit Coaches for Certification
It is up to each club to process their coaches and have one club administrator provide a spreadsheet to the NCJLA with all the club’s coaches and requirements met.  Use the NCJLA’s Coaches Registration Template spreadsheet. Keep in mind that coaches are to be submitted twice to the NCJLA, once via this Certification Template, and then again with team roster submissions.  Coaches spreadsheets are due by February 14, 2016.  Send to  . Any submitted after that date will cost the club $20 per coach to process.  Expect a week to ten days for the NCJLA to process and send out coaches cards to clubs.  Coaches cards with lanyards will be mailed to the address in the NCJLA Club Profile on our website.  Please be sure that the club’s mailing address is accurate. Contact   to update a club profile.


Clubs are responsible for confirming the accuracy of any non-NCSI background checks reported as well as maintaining evidence that their coaches have successfully completed all NCJLA Certification requirements.

The NCJLA will, on occasion, request physical proof of coaching requirement records.  If the requirements have not been met, and were falsified on the roster, the coach may be suspended for the remainder of the season, and the club may be put on probation. (See NCJLA Bylaws.) 

Coaches Clinics

While not “required” to be NCJLA Certified, US Lacrosse Level 1 Instructional Clinics are highly recommended, especially for head coaches.  Once a coach has completed both Level 1 online and in-person clinic, they should consider, especially if they are coaching players at U13 and above, completing Level 2 online and clinic.  Click on US Lacrosse Online courses or US Lacrosse instructional clinics for more information.