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Become an Official

Peninsula Sports Incorporated (PSI) is always seeking both experienced officials and newer officials to develop. Becoming an official is not difficult. You are required to learn and understand how to apply specific High School rules. Show confidence and composure while making accurate decisions in cooperation with fellow officials while managing players, coaches and the event. PSI will provide you with ongoing training to be prepared to confidently approach the challenges you will face as an official. PSI provides timely scheduled payments with some of the most competitive officiating fees within the region.  PSI and its roster of experienced officials are interested to work together with you if you are teachable, eager to learn and maintain a firm, fair and positive approach to officiating and the many participants involved with scholastic sports.  PSI looks forward to having you part of our team.  Please complete the following instructions to join PSI now. 

  1. Using your internet browser, visit the Arbiter Sports Registration Dashboard , complete the registration process to enroll in the sport or sports that you are interested in officiating. Enter the information that is necessary to create your new account in ArbiterSports.com.  You are assigned and paid for games online through this entity. You must acknowledge that you understand and agree to the terms of the Independent Contractor Agreement which defines your working status (you are NOT an employee). Provide, enter your experience, and make an online payment (using a credit card) to NFHS (National Federation of State High School Associations) for $17 which includes insurance and access to the Central Hub - Learning Center.
  2. After completing step 1, you'll receive an email that your new Arbiter Sports account is active. You receive and track assignments to games and matches in ArbiterSports. Log-in and verify (or update) your personal information  when you receive your account .  Enter your non-available days and times as well as mileage limits using the "Blocking" feature on the left-hand side of your schedule page.  The "Support" tab provides you with several articles to guide you through the process of Blocking and Creating Reports and Navigating through the website to find the information you need to work your assigned games.
  3. Check Meeting Information for the dates and times of training meetings for your sports. You should always attend the first meeting for your sport (or sports) and as many others as possible. The meetings are used to distribute needed information to all officials, to train new officials, and to provide "refresher training" to returning officials.
  4. Before the season begins you must pay the annual dues to Peninsula Sports. The Annual dues payment covers all sports from July of the current year through June of the of the following  year. Dues pay for all of the costs associated with training, meetings and assigning games to officials. The amount is $65 to be payed by check, or a discounted amount of $60 if paid by cash. There is no online payment method. These annual dues may be submitted by US Postal mail or at one of the scheduled pre-season meetings. Pre-Season meetings are mandatory for  officials working the sport to get to know the assignors, educational chair and leadership committee members while receiving all the updates of Rules, Policy and Procedures, and Directives and Training of NFHS, CCS and PSI.
  5. Before your first on-court or on-field appearance at a training scrimmage or actual game or match, you must acquire the necessary uniform and accessories for officiating your sport.  PSI will provide new officials with a list of necessary uniform and materials required to officiate your sport and assist in every way possible to purchase or obtain these items via a list of vendors or suppliers. 
  6. Training involves reading the rule book, casebook, and/or manual for your sport, attending our training meetings, attending on-court or on-field scrimmages scheduled in the preseason, and taking a rules test for the sport. You will then be notified of assignments through your Arbiter Sports account before/during and after these pre-season trainings. New officials are paired up with experienced members to provide guidance and instruction throughout your career. As you gain knowledge and experience, you will do the same for others. Successful officiating is always a team effort.
  7. Before the end of the first pay period, open an account with ArbiterPay.com. ArbiterPay is used to transfer your payroll amount from Peninsula Sports directly into any checking or savings accounts that you select. There is an option for receiving a check or a debit card. More information can be found by clicking the "Payroll and Mileage" link on the left. If you have an ArbiterPay account already, make sure you are "connected" to Arbiter Group # 101440, so that your transfer will get to your account from the PSI account.

Other information:

  • RECRUITMENT: Officials who recruit newcomers into Peninsula Sports receive a recruitment bonus of $75. Details of this program can be obtained from Peninsula Sports staff. Use the Referee Referral Form to submit your referral to PSI Office. 
  • Additional information for referees can be found in Referee Magazine and on their website.

Characteristics of a Good Sports Official

From a US Lacrosse Official

Officiating: The Ultimate Professional Development

August 23, 2016 - I am a sophomore in college and this upcoming season marks my fourth year officiating. I absolutely love it. Officiating provides a perfect transition for players who are not going to continue their career in high school, college, or beyond; allowing you to stay in the game (and get paid for doing so). 

Here are some of the reasons why I think officiating is ideal for high school and college (and beyond) students:

1. If you were a player, you already know the game and officiating just lets you stay in the game longer

I played girls lacrosse for five years in high school, but I became a men’s lacrosse official which puts me into an unusual situation of being completely new to the sport I officiate. While I love the men’s game and have had mentors push me to excel in the game, I lack a players experience on the field which can be a huge advantage. But now that I am in the game, I have endless opportunities to stay a part of it. I had the opportunity to officiate with a gentleman from Minnesota this past season who said he had been officiating for 41 years. 41 YEARS. If you truly love officiating and you stay in shape, there is no reason to abandon the game you love.

2. It teaches you how to operate in high pressure situations

My least favorite thing is getting yelled at. When coaches, parents, and fans critique your every move, the field can become a very uncomfortable place. This might be the championship game or the cross town rivalry. The tensions run high and the pressure mounts as you are forced to operate at the very best of your ability. As uncomfortable as it is, I know that the field is the most stressful workplace I will ever experience. If I can excel on the field, I can do anything. Dealing with pressure to excel on the field translates easily to dealing with stressful situations in the professional world.

3. You are forced to learn how to communicate effectively

All of my mentors have stressed and reiterated that calm communication is vital to effectively managing the game. Coaches have run off the sidelines to yell and scream at the officials. As an official, you can’t just run and hide, you need to step up and learn how to deal with the noise and chaos and still remain in control. Clear communication often diffuses tense situations and keeps everyone calm. But even if no one is yelling, learning how to both connect with the players and coaches but maintain professional distance is critical to managing the game. In the professional world, communication and interpersonal skills consistently rank on the top 10 skills employers look for in a candidate. If you can capitalize on your on-field experience and learn how to communicate effectively while officiating, you are well on your way to professional success. 

4. Networking

Most officials don’t officiate full time, instead they are doctors, lawyers, business men and women – anyone can be an official (with the proper training and certification). As a college student who is constantly on the lookout for ways to transition smoothly from the academic world to the professional one, I see my fellow officials as valuable resources and connections. If I have made a good impression as a hardworking partner or trainee, that speaks volumes to my partner and establishes my reputation on and off the field. I consider every game I officiate to be an opportunity to build my reputation and to make connections.

5. Officiating requires quick, on-your-feet thinking.

As an official, you do not have the luxury of time. Everything is happening at once and in a split second, you need to recognize fouls, identify the rule, correctly administer the penalty, and get the game going again. I have dealt with plays involving multiple penalties and changes in possession and I don’t have the opportunity to stand there, count on my fingers and figure out what happened. It is one of the biggest moments in a game where everyone is watching the official instead of the players. You must learn how to act and react in the moment and stay professional while doing so. The ability to adapt in an ever fluctuating environment is not limited to officiating, but it is essential for operating in the professional world as well.

6. Officiating provides applicable experience to any job type

Leadership skills? Check. 

Communication? Check. 

Ability to handle responsibility? Detail oriented? Ability to react quickly? Check, check, check. 

I have gone through multiple interviews in which the interviewer was more interested in my officiating experience than my seemingly more applicable professional experience. It doesn’t matter what profession you want to pursue when you graduate, officiating perfects so many different skills that you would be hard pressed to find a field in which your experiences were not relevant. 

7. You get to schedule your own hours and the pay is good

In the organizations I have worked for, I get to pick the days I am available and my travel limits, allowing me to focus on my academic schedule first. And I definitely don’t complain about the pay. Being an official is hard work, but the pay certainly beats whatever you would get at the restaurant down the road busing tables. 

I am immensely thankful for the opportunities that officiating has provided and I look forward to many more years as an official. I would encourage anyone who is interested in officiating to contact their local officials organization to learn more. Stand tall and wear your stripes with pride. 

Written by: Rachael Overland