Color Guard

  • Festival Class

    • ​This class is designed for brand new scholastic groups looking to get involved in the Winter Guard activity and groups looking to provide performance experience for their students without a heavy competitive environment. Groups in this class do not receive a numerical score and only receive a rating.

    • The focus in this class will be on performer training and achievement. Limited credit towards the overall rating will be given to the addition of a floor, props, etc. Also, groups are encouraged to limit the amount of time that they move. A group can stand still and spin the whole time and still be successful with their rating. The time requirements for this class will be the same as Novice class.

    • This class is primarily designed for schools with limited resources, but who want the experience of a performing Winter Guard. This class comprises all scholastic grades. There will be no differentiation between high school, middle school, and elementary. A group could have a mix of all three levels.

  • Prep Class​

    • For middle or junior high school students 8th grade and under. 

    • Not necessarily school-affiliated.

    • Adjudicated on CIPA Prep Sheets.

    • Due to timing and penalties, it is not recommended that these groups compete on the WGI level.

  • Scholastic Novice​

    • This class is for brand new groups. The focus is on training the most basic fundamentals of movement, equipment, and basic design. There should be limited movement in this class to allow students to develop a strong foundation of basic movement and equipment principles. There should be a limited exploration of weapons in this class.

    • Just because a guard is a first-year group, does not mean they belong in Novice. For example, they may have an established fall program and an experienced staff that will allow them to come out (or be promoted to) a higher classification. 

    • A group may only be in Novice for two years (unless being promoted during a season). A minimum satisfactory score will be established by the Color Guard Committee for Novice groups to meet at Championships to show that there is a satisfactory development of the program.

    • If there is a deficiency in a group, the Chief Judge (or a representative of the Color Guard Committee) or Director of Education (if one is in place) will meet with the staff after the season. They will review videos, lesson plans, methodologies, resources, etc., and set a plan of action for improvement. If they fail to meet the satisfactory score the second year, the Color Guard Committee will assign a mentor to the staff to be more hands on with the program. It will be the decision of the Color Guard Committee, mentor, and staff of what class to put the group in the third year. The third year is the final year in this scenario, and they must move out of the class regardless of final score.

    • A group who has special circumstances (such as a change in instructors, etc.) can petition to remain in Novice Class for one more year, regardless of their score at Championships at the end of the second season. They must petition the Color Guard Committee before the start of the season (through the Chief Judge) and go to the Qualifier as a Regional A Guard before the decision is made.

    • The Novice Class will use the same criteria reference sheet as the Regional A Class: the WGI Regional A Sheet. Since they will only be in the class for two years and their goal is to move up to Regional A, educationally it will be best if they start on the curriculum they will be using in the next class for better continuity and sustained growth. The goal is to be in this class for just the start of a program and not be a long term class placement.

  • Scholastic Regional AA

    • This class will be evaluated on the WGI Regional A Sheet. This class is designed for the guards that are in the developmental stages after Novice, exploring more beginning skills in movement and equipment and a little more variety of staging than Novice, but not quite at the level of a Regional A, AA, or A guard. The strong focus here is on the training of the students. There may be some limited exploration of weapons in this class.

    • There is not a time limit on how long a guard can be in this class, but the ultimate goal should be to develop into a Regional A, AA, or A Guard. It is understood that there may be limitations for many programs that could inhibit growth.

  • Scholastic Regional A

    • ​This class is for the purpose of meeting the needs of the guards that are at the very top of Regional A, who are not quite ready for the A sheet but are in the transitional stages to move to AA and the WGI National A sheet. The strong focus here is on the training of the students. Adjudicated on the WGI Regional A sheet.

  • Scholastic AA​

    • ​This class is for the purpose of meeting the needs of the guards that have outgrown the Regional A Sheet and are ready to get experience on the A sheet but are not quite ready to compete with the top half of the class. A strong focus here is on the training of the students. Adjudicated on WGI National A sheets.

  • Scholastic A

    • Units whose program includes basic and some intermediate levels of equipment and movement technique; adjudicated on WGI A Class sheets.

    • It should be noted that when a group competes at a WGI event, it does not affect what class they are put in at CIPA shows. For example, a Scholastic AA team may attend a WGI Regional in Class A for the experience, but that does not require them to compete in Class A in CIPA. If they were to receive a score at the regional that is a promotional score for that weekend in CIPA, they will be promoted in the circuit (does not apply to Regional A class).

    • It is very important that it is understood that the difference between Scholastic A and Scholastic AA at CIPA has absolutely nothing to do with whether a group chooses to compete at WGI. THERE IS NO NATIONAL OR LOCAL A. It all has to do with where a group fits within the criteria of the A sheets.

  • Scholastic Open

    • Units whose program includes a high level of intermediate and advanced equipment and body handling.

    • Adjudicated on WGI Open Class sheets. These units may compete at the WGI Open Class level regionally or nationally.

  • Scholastic World

    • Units whose program includes a high level of advanced equipment and body handling – the trendsetters in the activity.

    • Adjudicated on WGI World Class sheets. These units may compete at the WGI World Class level regionally or nationally.

  • Independent Regional A

    • This class if for the purpose of meeting the needs of beginning or developing independent guards who are not quite ready for the WGI National A sheet. The strong focus here is on the training of the students. There will be promotion numbers just like in the scholastic classes.

    • The group must be a true independent unit, and no unit that is eligible for the scholastic class can sign up for this class. The unit director may be asked to provide appropriate documentation from the CIPA President or Chief Judge to verify eligibility for this class. Adjudicated on the WGI Regional A sheet.

  • Independent A

    • Units whose program includes a high level of basic and intermediate equipment and body handling.

    • Adjudicated on WGI A sheets. These units may compete at the WGI A Class level regionally or nationally.

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    • Units may consist of performers who have not reached their 22nd birthday on or before March 31st of the contest season.

  • Independent Open

    • Units whose program includes a high level of intermediate and advanced equipment and body handling.

    • Adjudicated on WGI Open sheets. These units may compete at the WGI Open Class level regionally or nationally.

    • Units may consist of performers who have not reached their 23rd birthday on or before March 31st of the contest season.

  • Independent World

    • Units whose program includes a high level of advanced equipment and body handling – the trendsetters in the activity.

    • Adjudicated on National World sheets. These units may compete at the WGI World class level regionally or nationally. 

    • There is no age limit for this class.

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