Become a sports official: WIAA Outlines Streamlined Process for Prospective Officials

  1. Submit the online licensing application and pay fees. To access the online application, go under Officials and select Online Licensing.
  2. Once the application is received you will receive a confirmation email from the WIAA. Also in this email is a link to complete the Authorization Form for a Background Check. All new officials will need to complete a background check. Please check with the WIAA office if you are unsure if you need to complete a background check because you have been licensed in the past.
    • If a background check is needed, once the WIAA receives the background check results, the application will be processed.
    • If no background check is needed, your application will be processed immediately.
  3. Rules books and exam/video information will be sent about 6-8 weeks prior to the start of the season.
    • In order to advance in classification, officials need to complete the exam by indicated date (and score the required percentage) and watch the rules video by indicated deadline date every year. In order to advance to L5 and Master officials need to have the required amount of varsity contests listed in their profile.
    • A detailed description of all classification advancement requirements can be found in the Guide for Officials.

  • An officials license is good from August 1 to July 31.  The renewal period for the next year starts May 1.
  • The WIAA does not assign officials to regular season contests; that is done by either the high school athletic director or the conference commissioner.  Contact your local high school athletic director to let them know you are licensed and ready for assignments.
  • If there is an official’s association in your area, it is highly recommended you join the association. Being a member of an association is very beneficial as they oftentimes provide additional training and can help in getting you game assignments.
  • Officials are independent contractors and not employees of the WIAA or its member schools.


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David Keech
Author: David Keech

David Keech is a math teacher in Wisconsin Rapids and public address announcer for Abbotsord High School. He officiates basketball, baseball, and softball in central Wisconsin. He has reported on amateur sports since 2011, known as 'KeechDaVoice.' David can be reached at [email protected]