Starting a junior roller derby can be a really daunting task.
Even if you've helped set up your adult league, juniors are a lot of
extra work. You can make it a lot easier on yourself, and
we've done a lot of the back-end work to make it even easier. What
follows is not the only way to do this, it is simply the way we reccommend to simplify the
process as much as possible.
Organizing your Board, Members, and all the other back-end paperwork
Setting up the business structure and organization is the most
painful part of setting up a league for most people, and also the part
that can really cause problems later if it's not done
right - so get it out of the way, then focus on the fun stuff. If you
are not planning to be affiliated with an adult league, you will need to
do all the same things here that you would do
Here are the things you'll need to look into, at a bare minimum.
We've linked many of these to example documents which you can edit and
use (Google Docs - select File --> Make a Copy... to
save a copy you can edit), or which you can use as-is (.pdf
Name / Logo / Business Identity
United States Federal Registration and Tax ID (EIN)
Bank Account Set Up
Incorporation (include 501(c)(3) required language if you're going that route)
Board of Directors
Any additional required state paperwork - not-for-profit registration, etc.
- Membership Stuff
- Registration Packet
Codes of Conduct
*Important point - These are business bylaws, rather than roller
derby bylaws. Bylaws in a business sense is what the president's job
is, what the vice president's job is, how the
organization is organized and administered. This document is filed
with the state government for corporations, and the US Government for
501(c)3 not-for-profit organizations. The IRS does not care
how much your skaters pay in dues/registration, or what happens to
them if they don't make it to practice. Put that in a separate document -
we recommend calling it Membership Rules.
Another important point - Keep in mind that the Membership Rules are written for children and their parents. Do not put every minor
revision or change up to a league vote. As long as things
are running smoothly, the kids "just want to skate" and their parents
tend to "just want their kids to skate." It's a delicate balance - the
board is in charge of running the league and will
probably make 95%+ of the day-to-day decisions either on its own, or
after asking for parent/skater input, but there should be a method that
the members can use to get rules changed in the
(hope-it-never-comes-up) case of the board running amok or
disappearing without a trace, just in case.
We recommend putting all of the required paperwork for your league
into a single packet. The KISS principle - Keep It Super Simple - always
applies in everything you do; no one likes to go hunting
for forms all over the web, or downloading 30 attachments, if it's
avoidable. Many PDF creation programs will allow you to attach pages
together into a single file; this can be very useful in
compiling your registration packet.
Notes on Membership Rules: The JRDA recommends that you hold both
behavioral, and scholastic expectations for your skaters - they should
be expected to behave themselves both on
and off the track, and to uphold a certain GPA, in order to
participate in junior derby. As parents, our policy with our own kids
is, School Comes First - and we extended that to derby.
Details and links to live documents can be found here: http://www.juniorrollerderby.org/starting-junior-league