Constitution of the NHS Robotics Team

Effective: 8-8-08

Revised: 1-5-11, 1-24-12, and 6-20-13

We, the students and mentors of the Northshore High School FIRST Robotics Team, aka Team 1912 or Team Combustion, hereby establish our team for the purpose of enhancing our understanding of math, science, and technology, as well as spreading our knowledge throughout the community while exercising gracious professionalism.

The hierarchy of authority and discipline is as follows:

  1. Northshore High School Principal
  2. Teacher Sponsor
  3. Mentor
  4. Student

FIRST describes FIRST Robotics Competition as “The varsity Sport for the mind.” Students are challenged to raise funds, design a team “brand,” hone teamwork skills, and build and program robots to perform prescribed tasks. The student role is to gain knowledge from their mentors, participate actively in building the robot and project management, and give back to the community. Students must be self-motivated, dedicated, and enthusiastic.

Parents are asked to actively support the efforts of mentors and students. Parents are welcome to become mentors. Additionally, parents may participate through the Booster Club, whose roles include assisting with corporate and community fundraising and organizing the provisioning of snacks and food throughout the build season.

Mentors are adult volunteers who play a vital role in the success of a team and the students – lending their time and talents to the team. There are no special skills required to serve as a mentor as it is not the mentor’s job to build the robot. Mentors work extensively with team members during the build season, designing, building, and fabricating a functional robot for competition. Mentors serve as role models for students, engaging and inspiring students in ways far beyond science and technology. They enable students and adults to appreciate the value of sportsmanship, teamwork, and Gracious Professionalism®. Mentors are asked to help manage student’s behavior at team activities (i.e. outreach events, build sessions, competitions).

Officers and Appointed Offices:
Officers must have at least one year of experience, be in good academic standing (defined as a 3.0 unweighted GPA), and must be elected into office by their fellow students. Elections will take place before the end of the school year. If there are no candidates for an elected position, mentors will appoint a qualified member, who has the option to accept or decline the appointment. Guidelines for candidate eligibility are outlined in the Officer Candidate Information Packet (see Appendix I). The elected offices and their duties and responsibilities:

  1. President: serves as Student Project Manager; responsible for the overall flow and timing of the team; organizes team work schedule; heads Outreach Team (community outreach, volunteering, donations, and service); heads Ignition Team (starting, restarting, mentoring, guiding, and assisting other FIRST teams in FRC, FTC, FLL, and Junior FLL); represents team at official functions and presentations.
  2. Vice President: heads Awards Team (Chairman’s, Woodie Flowers); Assists President in all other presidential duties as required; and leads efforts for team spirit at events.

Appointed Offices: (appointments are made by the teacher sponsor in consultation with adult mentors)

  1. Challenge Captain: organizes all work, decisions, inventory, and communications from the challenge team.
  2. Chassis Captain: organizes all work, decisions, inventory, and communications from the chassis team.
  3. Controls Captain: organizes all work, decisions, inventory, and communications from the controls team.
  4. CAD Captain: organizes all work, decisions, inventory, and communications from the CAD team.
  5. Finance Captain: responsible for team business plan; responsible for all sponsorship correspondence (grant applications, newsletters, updates, invitations, etc.), writes Entrepreneurship Award submission.
  6. Safety Captain: overall responsible for team Safety Program; leads safety outreach program; conducts safety training; conducts random safety inspections.
  7. Media Captain: responsible for all team media efforts; writes Media and Technology Innovation Award; all video production; responsible for team website, social media (Twitter, Facebook, You Tube, etc.), and photographs; leads Scrapbook team; leads Animation Team.
  8. Strategist: heads Strategy team; in charge of the game rules and strategies; leads scouting; is the master of the rulebook and ensures the robot is in compliance with those rules.

Each Appointed Office will have a Deputy Captain or assistant. The Deputy Captain is chosen by the Captain and is designed to be, but is not required to be, a sophomore or junior.

Any officer, elected or appointed, who fails to properly discharge the duties of the position may be removed from the position at the discretion of the teacher sponsor and project manager. Officers will be given every opportunity to improve their performance prior to removal.

Team Membership:

  1. Pay a club fee to the Teacher Sponsor
  2. Register with FIRST in the Student Team Information Member System:
  3. Successfully complete Safety Training
  4. Meet the required hours of participation

Hours of Participation:
Robotics is a year-round activity divided into three segments – Build season, Competition season, and the Off-season. The Build season begins with kick-off on the first Saturday of January and continues for six weeks. The Competition season lasts for six to eight weeks following the Build season. The most time-intensive period is the Build season while the robot is designed, built, and tested. Outreach events may occur anytime during the year, but primarily take place during the summer months. A specific number of hours must be attained during Build season for regional competition attendance. Competitions are school field trips. Additional hours are required to attend any further competitions such as second regionals or championships. In addition to the hours, students are required to participate in a number of community outreach events. Exceptions to hours of participation or outreach event attendance are granted at the discretion of the teacher sponsor. Students in their first year are exempted from the outreach requirement.


  • 70 Build season hours for first regional competition
  • 7 Outreach events

Team Members:

  • 50 Build season hours for first regional competition
  • 5 Outreach events

Additional competitions: 10 hours per competition. The hours must be earned in the time period between the competitions unless waived by the teacher sponsor.

Varsity Letter:
Students who complete the required hours of participation, attend a regional competition, and attend the required number of outreach events are eligible to earn a varsity letter in Robotics. The teacher sponsor may waive a shortage of hours of participation or outreach events attended, but not both, in extenuating circumstances.

Code of Conduct (Behavior):
Students, teachers, and mentors are required to comply with all policies of the St. Tammany Parish School Board and the Uniform Discipline Code. These policies, rules, and regulations must be complied with at all team events (outreach, build, competition, etc.) and are outlined in the District Handbook for Students and Parents ( Any violations of these standards will be reported to the teacher sponsor. Potential consequences of student misconduct are outlined in the District Handbook.

FIRST also promotes two behavior standards: Gracious Professionalism® and Coopertition®. From the FIRST website:
"Gracious professionalism is part of the ethos of FIRST. It’s a way of doing things that encourages high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and respects individuals and the community.
With Gracious Professionalism, fierce competition and mutual gain are not separate notions. Gracious professionals learn and compete like crazy, but treat one another with respect and kindness in the process. They avoid treating anyone like losers. No chest thumping tough talk, but no sticky-sweet platitudes either. Knowledge, competition, and empathy are comfortably blended.
In the long run, Gracious Professionalism is part of pursuing a meaningful like. One can add to society and enjoy the satisfaction of knowing one has acted with integrity and sensitivity.”

"Coopertition® produces innovation. At FIRST, Coopertition is displaying unqualified kindness and respect in the face of fierce competition. Coopertition is founded on the concept and philosophy that teams can and should help and cooperate with each other even as they compete.
Coopertition involves learning from teammates. It is teaching teammates. It is learning from Mentors. And it is managing and being managed. Coopertition means competing always, but assisting and enabling others when you can."

Revisions to the Constitution:
Any and all changes to the Constitution must be approved by a 2/3 majority of team officers and the teacher sponsor.

To see the PDF version of our Constitution