Canadian Sport School Hockey League: FAQ

Mission Statement?
“To be National Leaders in Education-Based Hockey”

What is Education-Based Hockey?
Education-based hockey focuses on the complete Student Athlete; Academic Excellence, Character, Citizenship, Sportsmanship and Hockey Development.

Is the CSSHL a sanctioned league?
Yes. All programs within the CSSHL are sanctioned by Hockey Canada or USA Hockey, along with their respective provincial branch.

I want to put a team in the CSSHL, what is the process?
The first step is to get approval from your branch (BC Hockey, Hockey Alberta, etc.) and Hockey Canada. You will have to check with your branch to see when their application deadline is and what information they will require for your application.

Once you start the application process with Hockey Canada and your branch you can contact the CSSHL at info@csshl.ca for our application guidelines.

If your application isn’t approved by Hockey Canada and your branch you will not be considered for the CSSHL. If your application is approved by the Branch and Hockey Canada it doesn’t guarantee that you will be accepted into the CSSHL.

Further Reading:
Hockey Canada Program Policy
Hockey Canada Application Guidelines
Sport School Benefits
Hockey Canada Branches

What is the difference between each division?

On the male side, we have three Midget-aged divisions and two Bantam-aged divisions.

Midget Prep is our top division and is for students in Grades 10, 11 and 12. This division competes at the top Midget levels across North America.

Midget Varsity is our second division for students in Grades 10, 11 and 12.  The division competes at the top Tier 1 Midget levels across North America and is made up mainly of Grade 10 and 11 students.

Elite 15 is our only single-age division, consisting of just first-year Midget students (Grade 10). This division allows elite level 15-year-olds the chance to develop as elite level student athletes within their own age group.

Bantam Prep is our top Bantam division and is for both first-year and second-year Bantams, although the majority of students in the Bantam Prep Division are second-years. The Bantam Prep division competes at top Bantam levels across North America.

Bantam Varsity is our male entry point in the CSSHL with the majority of the students being first-year Bantams that compete with leagues right below the top-level leagues in each province.  With the majority of student athletes being 13-year-olds, it allows them to be introduced to body checking while playing against their peers.

On the female side, we have two Midget-aged divisions, Female Prep and Female Varsity.

Female Prep is our top female division and competes at the top Female Midget levels across North America with majority of the students being in Grades 11 and 12.

Female Varsity is our Female developmental stream and is designed to develop students so they can move onto the Female Prep stream.  The majority of the students playing at this level will be in Grades 9 to 11.

How much does it cost to have my daughter/son in the CSSHL?
Each program is unique to one another. We advise you to do some research and find a CSSHL program that fits best for you and your aspiring student athlete. The cost of a program will vary depending on your needs and what programs will offer, such as room and board, transportation, food and hotels on team trips, equipment, apparel, etc.

Does my daughter/son have to attend a specific school, or can they go to school wherever they want?
CSSHL programs are required to have all of their student athletes attend one school that is aligned with the CSSHL program. In some cases, a program will also be aligned with a middle school if their high school does not offer younger grades (Grade 8 or 9) for bantam-aged athletes.

This is what separates the CSSHL from other hockey programming. Having all students in a program attend one school allows for increased academic monitoring. Each program has a dedicated school liaison that works with students and coaches to ensure grades are being kept up. If a student athlete is not meeting their academic potential then they will be put onto an education plan and provided support until their grades reach their academic potential.

What does a typical day look like for a student in the CSSHL?
The structure of a day will vary depending on Program, but generally students will spend 75% of the school day in the classroom and the other 25% of the day will be for on and off-ice workouts.  A student athletes training is typically completed by dinner each night which allows them to concentrate on their academics during the evening hours without getting interrupted for practices or training activities. The large majority of CSSHL games are played on weekends.

What are Showcase games?
Each team will attend select CSSHL Showcases each season. A CSSHL Showcase sees multiple teams (4-10) in one location playing three to five games on a weekend. This allows for reduced travel time, reduced classroom time missed and maximum exposure to scouts and coaches at the next level.

At a Showcase event, you generally will play teams that are the furthest away from you geographically, and then the remaining games of the schedule are played against your closest competitors.

Will my daughter/son have access to Certified Athletic Therapist?
Absolutely. Teams are required to have a Certified Athletic Therapist (CAT), Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) or doctor on the bench at all of their games.  They are also required to have CAT’s on staff, or contracted out, to setup a student’s recovery plan and monitor their recovery process.

What about a doctor or dentist?
All programs must have a dedicated practice/person to supply medical and dental services to their student athletes.

How long are CSSHL games?
Our games are three, 20-minute stop time periods with an ice clean during the first and second intermission.   

A five-minute three-on-three overtime period will take place in the event teams are tied at the end or regulation time and a three person shootout will take place if teams are tied after the overtime period. 

Due to the potential for overtime, game slots are 2.25 hours in length.

How do I tryout for a CSSHL team?

Click here to view the list of Evaluation Camps this spring!