National High School
Drill Team

SOP Updates/Clarifications Page

Below are the Event Update/Clarifications that have been implemented into the coming NHSDTC since the initial posting of all event materials. These items listed below are found in inverse chronological order to their date of implementation. All schools are encouraged to download and prepare for these changes in advance.

MAJOR NEWS - THE 2024 NHSDTC SOP's were both re-posted as "REV-1" in very early JANUARY. Both have several changes!
Please re-download and review to ensure you have the latest rules and guidelines that will be in full force during the event.


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#1 - 7 August 2023: Initial Website Set-up
SOP Updates site established - Score sheets Posted - SOPs Posted.
These are used by so many teams, we post this first. Updated floor layouts will come in the ensuing weeks.
There are now just TWO SOPs. Read BOTH to best prepare your school. Involve your cadets in reading them!
School Entry site will be open in early October, along with posting of the floor layouts and other items.
Good Luck to all Teams!

#2 - 7 August 2023: Utilization of non-standard drill gear - gaining permission for same
The NHSDTC attempts in many cases to do something very difficult - provide a safe and exciting drill competition that maintains a balance between the service differences that allow judges to fairly and impartially evaluate drill within a set of rules that provide a somewhat even playing field between teams. This is not a measurable concept and it requires much judgment and educated guesswork. Reviewing scoresheets and final finishes by gender and service, time of day competing, service of the judge, speaking with other meet organizers and service heads, comparing scores and event aspects for service bias, regional bias and other issues to attempt to formulate a complete set of rules and standards that give all schools the most even shake possible within a completely uneven drill world. Generally, we believe looking at the teams that have done well at the NHSDTC, we believe that we have done that in most all regards. New items and concepts come forward and hard decisions have to be made. We learn from these and always keep an very open mind going forward.

Again, two items to take away from this: 1) If you plan to utilize a piece of non-standard gear in competition drill, check with the meet director in advance to ensure they will allow it (note: much like lights on a rifle, velcro slings, etc. etc. Just because something is NOT referenced in the rules directly does not mean it is allowed, it simply means it is not addressed as of yet. And you do NOT want that to be addressed just before use on-site! 2) Know that every rule is reviewed annually. As this sling becomes more widely distributed and its user base becomes more diverse, it is entirely possible like ANY rule it may change in the future.

#3 - 7 August 2023: Minor Change - AFMAN 36-2203 has been replaced
For the few people that have not been made aware, PAMPHLET 34-1203 - dated 13 SEPTEMBER 2022 is the current unarmed drill & ceremony manual for both the U.S. Air Force and the Space Force. Armed Drill (the parts involving rifle manipulation) are still government by the Army Manual TC 3-21.5 - dated May 2021. Downloads are available on our service manual section to the new Phamplet.

#4 - 7 August 2023: Removal of Ribbons & Name Tags in All Regulation and Color Guard Events/All Levels
Teams may remove their ribbons and name tags during BOTH Regulation and Color Guard events. This update will make this FULLY ALLOWED and ENCOURAGED to keep from damaging uniforms and these expensive pieces.

#5 - 7 January 2024: Formation of the Nationals Advisory Board/All Levels
All teams should note SNI has begun working with a small group of talented and dedicated retired JROTC instructors who are currently serving as the Nationals Advisory Board. This group has many functions and one of their most important will be the constant review and suggestions put forth to better the rules and procedures for the NHSDTC event. This of course filters down to the other Spring drill events where we control the event SOP as well. Their input, along with post-event feedback from attending teams, will be integral going forward to continue to make the SNI Drill Universe the best it can possibly be!

#6 - 8 January 2024: MAJOR CHANGE - Posting of "REV1" SOPs for the NHSDTC/All Levels
The SOPs took a top down review and too many items were changed to maintain an "SOP Update". Therefore, a new, REVISED COMPETITION SOP and GENERAL SOP for the 2024 NHSDTC event has been posted on the website. Both are labeled "Rev 1" in the top corner of the document. SNI urges every instructor annually to PLEASE take the time to read and prepare, and have any/all questions asked and answered BEFORE you arrive in Daytona Beach! Have your cadet commanders read their relevant sections and ensure they have no unanswered questions. Preparation is the key and we are all here to assist. Sorry for the delay in getting this out but you will have PLENTY of time to implement anything listed within this document for the 2024 event.

#7 - 2 February 2024: Unarmed Division - Unarmed Commander Inspection and in All Events
The NHSDTC Competition SOP states in the Unit Inspection regulation that "Commander's will be armed...." This is misleading and written poorly. in the ARMED DIVISION, Commander's will be armed as detailed. The Unarmed Division is just that, no Commander or any cadet will maintain any form of sword, sabre, rifle...nothing.

#8 - 2 February 2024: Armed Exhibition - One or Two Rifles are Permitted
The NHSDTC Competition SOP does not specifically mention the NUMBER of rifles that can be utilized. Going forward, Within Solo, Dual, or Team Armed Exhibition Drill, cadets may perform with one or two rifles. These rifles may NOT be pre-placed in the area. They must be brought in when the team marches in/out by competing cadets OR the rifle(s) can be handed to performing cadet(s) at the tape line under the same regulations as a broken rifle is replaced and a new rifle is entered into the competition floor.

As the event draws near, no further SOP updates/clarifications will be allowed on this site for the upcoming Nationals. NO NEED TO CHECK HERE FURTHER - THIS IS IT! Any other minor issues will be discussed at Event Registration before the competition begins.

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