Now Reading
Competition & Teamwork: University Interscholastic League Makes the Grade

Competition & Teamwork: University Interscholastic League Makes the Grade

by Sara Whitaker

As school begins this year, consider encouraging your high school child to participate in an extracurricular activity through UIL. From accounting to football, there is an opportunity for participation.

For 100 years University Interscholastic League (UIL) has provided leadership and guidance as a governing body to public schools in the state of Texas. From academics to athletics to the arts, this highly respected program is recognized all around the country, representing quality competition in Texas schools.

The league serves as a standard for how high school students in our community can excel and engage in healthy competition as a representative of their school, whatever their interests may be.

According to its website, UIL provides students with unique educational experiences through competition while promoting good sportsmanship and cooperation among schools. The program empowers the schools to set the rules for their individual UIL activities, allowing each school district to set the standard of what it means to represent that school.

In our area, the program is in place at the high school level. It reinforces what high school students learn in the classroom and takes it a step further. The competitive guidelines teach students how to compete as well as how to win and lose with a level of maturity and respect. Elaine Harrell, UIL coordinator for Texas High School, has been involved with the program for 10 years. “This program is for students who have an intrinsic desire to go above and beyond,” she says. “It’s so beneficial — they learn dedication, commitment and team work.”

UIL is for anyone, even if academics or athletics aren’t what you consider to be your child’s thing. The program is all-inclusive and helps teens find their niche–somewhere they can get involved with people their age that share their interests. These shared interests build camaraderie and students find a mentor in their coaches, adding a positive adult role model in their lives.

While the program is open to everyone, it certainly requires commitment from the students as well as their parents. It engages the entire family and requires time and dedication.  Also, colleges around the country recognize the value of UIL and understand how strenuous these programs can be, making many students in our area highly sought after!

Every high school in the state of Texas is part of the UIL program and many schools offer participation at no cost to students. Parents or students interested in UIL should reach out the school counselor to locate a UIL coordinator for their campus.  To learn more about UIL, parents and students can visit the website at www.uiltexas.org.

See Also

Categories for UIL Competition


Accounting, Calculator Applications, Computer Applications, Computer Science, Current Issues and Events, Journalism Events, Feature Writing, Headline Writing, News Writing, Editorial Writing, Mathematics,
Number Sense, Literary Criticism, Informative Speaking, Persuasive Speaking, Prose Interpretation, Poetry Interpretation, Social Studies,
Spelling and Vocabulary, Science, Ready Writing, One Act Play


Band, Vocal Ensemble


Football, Basketball, Baseball, Tennis, Soccer, Swim/Dive, Track, Golf, Powerlifting, Volleyball, Cheerleading, Color Guard, Texas Highsteppers

If your child attends an Arkansas public school, their comparative school governing organization is Arkansas Activities Association (AAA) and you can view the categories in which your child can participate at www.ahsaa.org.

© 2022 Texarkana Parent Magazine. All Rights Reserved.

Scroll To Top