Organized in 1903, the Indiana High School Athletic Association is a voluntary, not-for-profit organization that is self-supporting without the use of tax monies.
Any high school in the state, or any junior high school offering ninth grade, whether public, private, parochial, or institutional, if accredited by the Indiana Department of Education, may become a member of the Association by making a formal application that is authorized by its board of education and by subscribing to the rules and By-Laws of the Association. Membership, once attained, is renewable annually provided requirements are met. The purpose of the IHSAA is to encourage and direct wholesome amateur athletics in the high schools of Indiana. In keeping with this mission, the Association:
- Regulates, supervises and administers interschool athletic activities among its member high schools as an integral part of the secondary education program. A tournament series is sanctioned in 20 sports, 10 for girls and 10 for boys. This school year, more than 160,000 students will compete in IHSAA-sanctioned tournaments.
- Cooperates with all agencies vitally concerned with the health and educational welfare of secondary school students.
- Determines qualifications of individual contestants, coaches and officials.
- Provides written communications to facilitate athletic relations among member schools.
- Establishes standards for eligibility, competition and sportsmanship while providing protection against exploitation of schools or students.
The IHSAA is governed by its legislative body, the Board of Directors. Composed of 19 members who are elected by member school principals from three IHSAA legislative districts, the directors serve staggered three-year terms. The Board of Directors meets annually with the responsibility of establishing the Association’s rules and regulations.
The same 19 members of the Board also comprise the IHSAA Executive Committee. The Committee meets monthly and is responsible for organizing and directing state tournaments and meets, interpreting the Association's By-Laws, determining penalties for rules violations, establishing the Association's state office and employing a commissioner and staff to administer the daily functions of the Association.