HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

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1992 in spaceflight
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HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Sun Oct 01, 2017 10:15 am

HSAPQ to leave regular season question writing market; NAQT to write VHSL-style questions this year

In spring 2017, the leadership of High School Academic Pyramid Questions, Inc. (HSAPQ) decided that other personal commitments had taken away from their ability to ensure that quality questions were provided for the Virginia High School League (VHSL) Scholastic Bowl competition. With President Mike Cheyne, Vice-President Tommy Casalaspi, and Secretary/Treasurer Shawn Pickrell all hoping to resign, HSAPQ decided to explore a departure from the regular season question writing market, while still ensuring the VHSL continued to have the highest quality competition.

HSAPQ then began negotiations with National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC (NAQT), in order to ensure that the VHSL maintained an excellent standard of competition. The VHSL was then brought into the negotiation.

As a result of this agreement between the VHSL, HSAPQ, and NAQT:
* HSAPQ has agreed to leave the regular season question writing market.
* NAQT will provide questions for the VHSL state championship and will make VHSL-style questions available for regular-season, regional, and super-regional events.

This agreement took effect on September 25, 2017. VHSL member schools in need of regular season questions should contact NAQT directly, either by email at hosting@naqt.com or by phone at 888-411-6278. That address and number can also be used for any sort of question about NAQT, its policies, or its products.

Several of NAQT's Invitational Series sets will be converted to VHSL-formatted matches. For 2017-18, the sets to be converted will be IS #169A, #171A, #172, and #174. Further details can be found on NAQT's website at http://www.naqt.com/vhsl.

The agreement will not cover the National All-Star Academic Tournament (NASAT), an end-of-season tournament where participating states send one or more teams of all-stars that HSAPQ has run since 2010. HSAPQ will reach a decision about plans for NASAT 2018 in the coming weeks.

Former writers and editors for HSAPQ will be given an expanded window in which to apply for NAQT positions if they do not already write for NAQT.

HSAPQ is glad to have had the chance to provide quality questions for the VHSL Scholastic Bowl competition between the 2009-10 and 2016-17 seasons -- and NAQT is excited about this possibility. Both companies look forward to the continuance of what is now a 16-year-old tradition of the VHSL Scholastic Bowl having quiz bowl questions of the finest quality.
Jacob O'Rourke
Washington (MO) HS Assistant Coach (2014-Present); MOQBA Secretary (2015-Present); HSAPQ Host Contact; NASAT Outreach Coordinator (2016 and 2017)
Formerly: Kirksville HS Assistant Coach (2012-2014); Truman State '14; and Pacific High (MO) '10


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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Important Bird Area » Sun Oct 01, 2017 10:22 am

A quick follow-up to Jacob's announcement:

We're very excited to be supplying VHSL-style questions this year. Tournament hosts in Virginia can use this page to propose an event using our questions, or contact us directly at hosting@naqt.com.

Both Jacob and I will be responding to questions from the community in this thread and by email. It's been a pleasure to work with HSAPQ throughout this process; please let us know if you have any commentary about the announcement from our companies.
Jeff Hoppes
President, Northern California Quiz Bowl Alliance
former HSQB Chief Admin (2012-13)
VP for Communication and history subject editor, NAQT
Editor emeritus, ACF

"I wish to make some kind of joke about Jeff's love of birds, but I always fear he'll turn them on me Hitchcock-style." -Fred

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by J. Young » Sun Oct 01, 2017 12:24 pm

What about Virginia teams that compete in VHSL and intend to play tournaments run on the sets that are to be converted into VHSL format?
Justin Young
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McLean HS '20

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Important Bird Area » Sun Oct 01, 2017 12:27 pm

Unfortunately, teams in that position will need to choose between competing in VHSL and attending the out-of-state tournaments in question. (For obvious reasons we do not plan to sell the converted sets to hosts within the state of Virginia.)
Jeff Hoppes
President, Northern California Quiz Bowl Alliance
former HSQB Chief Admin (2012-13)
VP for Communication and history subject editor, NAQT
Editor emeritus, ACF

"I wish to make some kind of joke about Jeff's love of birds, but I always fear he'll turn them on me Hitchcock-style." -Fred

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by bluqiu » Sun Oct 01, 2017 12:34 pm

What are the prospective difficulties of regular season, regionals, super-regionals, and states in relation to sets NAQT already produce?

Thanks
Billy Luqiu
Cave Spring High / Roanoke Valley Governor's School '19

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Important Bird Area » Sun Oct 01, 2017 12:44 pm

Our VHSL-style questions for regular-season play will be at the difficulty level of our Introductory Invitational Series sets.

VHSL-style questions for regional and super-regional events, and the questions we will supply for the VHSL state championship, will be at the difficulty level of our Invitational Series sets.
Jeff Hoppes
President, Northern California Quiz Bowl Alliance
former HSQB Chief Admin (2012-13)
VP for Communication and history subject editor, NAQT
Editor emeritus, ACF

"I wish to make some kind of joke about Jeff's love of birds, but I always fear he'll turn them on me Hitchcock-style." -Fred

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by dni » Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:44 am

Which IS sets will be used at the regular season, regional, super-regional, and state VHSL events? Can a school send separate teams to both out-of-state and VHSL events that use the same set?
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Langley HS 2019

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by swimmerstar » Mon Oct 02, 2017 7:34 am

Will teams that don't play in the VHSL regular season be able to play IS-169A and IS-171A out of state?
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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Cheynem » Mon Oct 02, 2017 4:46 pm

(If the moderators wish to move this, to avoid cluttering up an informative thread, please do)

I joined HSAPQ in, I think, 2009, its second or so year of existence. With the exception of one year (in which I still contributed some NASAT questions), I was with the company until this year, and served as the president of the company in its final year of existence. Like I think any enterprise that is primarily a labor of love, my time in the company was marked by a vast amount of joy, frustration, pride, and stress. I am proud that the company produced pyramidal, high-quality questions for so many years in both the Virginia market and elsewhere. I am proud that NASAT, one of quizbowl's hidden jewels for years in terms of great sets, has given the best players from across the country a chance to show their knowledge. Ending the company's run (so to speak) was not an easy decision and is more a reflection of honest acceptance of reality than dissatisfaction with any particular thing.

There are a lot of people I need to thank. The current HSAPQ board is, of course, first and foremost on the list--Shawn Pickrell, Tommy Casalaspi, Jacob O'Rourke, and Jonathan Ratliff. All four of these guys made my first and only year as head of the company a very pleasurable experience. Over the years, I've also had the good fortune to work with some of the hardest working and brightest people in quizbowl--every year, in particular, somebody steps up to serve as a company MVP. A mere partial list of these luminaries includes Cody Voight, Matt Bollinger, Auroni Gupta, Joelle Smart, Jonathan Magin, Ophir Lifshitz, Jerry Vinokurov, Evan Adams, Will Butler, Matt Weiner, Kenji Shimizu, Noah Prince, Jonathan Pinyan, Dwight Wynne, Max Schindler, and many, many more (even those who requested I not mention their names), including people who had higher roles way before I did anything. Some of these people were writers. Some worked behind the scenes. Some took on thankless tasks like proofreading or writing the computational math questions.

The end of HSAPQ is indeed the end of an era. In an age in which good quizbowl is becoming old hat (in some, obviously not all areas), the pioneering work of the company and all of its leaders, members, and contributors should be recognized and applauded.
Mike Cheyne
Formerly U of Minnesota

"You killed HSAPQ"--Matt Bollinger

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by El Salvadoreno » Mon Oct 02, 2017 4:56 pm

So if HSAPQ is, in fact, dead, is there any word on whether another group will take over NASAT?
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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Mon Oct 02, 2017 5:20 pm

El Salvadoreno wrote:So if HSAPQ is, in fact, dead, is there any word on whether another group will take over NASAT?
We are going to discuss it in the next few weeks, which we have said. Repeatedly.
Jacob O'Rourke
Washington (MO) HS Assistant Coach (2014-Present); MOQBA Secretary (2015-Present); HSAPQ Host Contact; NASAT Outreach Coordinator (2016 and 2017)
Formerly: Kirksville HS Assistant Coach (2012-2014); Truman State '14; and Pacific High (MO) '10


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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Cheynem » Mon Oct 02, 2017 6:02 pm

Just to add on about NASAT, I hope people are aware of the following things:

1. We are very proud of NASAT and want the tournament to continue. We will do everything in our power to find some way to have the tournament continue.

2. We want the tournament to continue as a high-quality tournament. This is not the kind of thing that is foisted upon one well-meaning individual with no experience in running national tournaments.

3. NASAT is a very large undertaking. It is hard to produce and in a world with at least two NAQT high school national tournaments, one NSC, and college nationals, there is a finite number of people who can produce the set.

What all of this means is that this is not a decision that can be reached in a few minutes or even a few days. We need to be very careful before making instant decisions.
Mike Cheyne
Formerly U of Minnesota

"You killed HSAPQ"--Matt Bollinger

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Mon Oct 02, 2017 8:36 pm

It's easy to forget just how much smaller the universe of good high school quizbowl was nine years ago, and just how inadequate the available offerings would be to teams today -- and were even to teams back then. Outside the PACE NSC and a handful of scattered, inconsistent housewrites, there just wasn't a way to play a full competition year on fair, rigorous, academic, gimmick-less material; teams either had to scrounge (or daydream) to find questions resembling the standard fare of today, or fill the gap with difficult college sets.

HSAPQ was the first group to consistently apply the principles of good college question writing, and the corps of good college question writers who expounded those principles, to the high school regular season. In short order, this really did change everything. As it became more possible for teams to attend and prepare for a full schedule of high-quality events, a new generation of coaches, players, writers, and local circuits drew on its example -- pushing a lot of the HSAPQ sets' best features into other spheres, such as independent housewrites, NAQT sets, History Bowl, and even college and open-level packets. Its offerings gradually dwindled over the years as a chronic shortage of viable sets rapidly became the glut we have now, but that makes them no less important.

I wasn't among the most dedicated contributors to HSAPQ -- out of its nine years of existence, I was officially a full member for only one year, and a freelancer to various degrees for three more -- but it is nonetheless bittersweet to see it reach the end of its lifespan. In a way, the improvements HSAPQ spurred on throughout the quizbowl writing world ended up rendering it unnecessary to the game's continued health -- which is, in one way of looking at it, a major tribute to its founders' vision and hard work.
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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Important Bird Area » Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:50 pm

swimmerstar wrote:Will teams that don't play in the VHSL regular season be able to play IS-169A and IS-171A out of state?
Yes. But this decision comes with a warning:

It is your team's responsibility to make 100% certain that you do not play the same questions twice (read our security responsibility page here.) You must be certain of where your regular-season questions come from. You must be certain about what events constitute your team's regular season (including district play, dual/triangular/quad meets, or VHSL-style invitationals). You must be certain that your district is not planning to introduce or expand regular-season play in a way that would cause set conflicts.

If you have any questions about how to interpret this, or about what sets are being used where, please contact NAQT, your district coordinator, and/or the VHSL.
Jeff Hoppes
President, Northern California Quiz Bowl Alliance
former HSQB Chief Admin (2012-13)
VP for Communication and history subject editor, NAQT
Editor emeritus, ACF

"I wish to make some kind of joke about Jeff's love of birds, but I always fear he'll turn them on me Hitchcock-style." -Fred

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Important Bird Area » Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:55 pm

dni wrote:Which IS sets will be used at the regular season, regional, super-regional, and state VHSL events?
Our regular-season VHSL-style sets will be converted from Invitational Series #169A and #171A.

Our VHSL-style set for regional play will be converted from Invitational Series #172.

Our VHSL-style set for super-regionals, and the set we will supply for the VHSL state championship, will be converted from Invitational Series #174.
dni wrote:Can a school send separate teams to both out-of-state and VHSL events that use the same set?
No. In general, NAQT's policy is that this kind of setup requires all of these conditions: 1) entirely distinct team rosters 2) the permission of the tournament directors involved 3) the team agrees that it may not use performance from the second event to qualify for our national championships. Our understanding is that the VHSL does not allow this for security reasons.
Jeff Hoppes
President, Northern California Quiz Bowl Alliance
former HSQB Chief Admin (2012-13)
VP for Communication and history subject editor, NAQT
Editor emeritus, ACF

"I wish to make some kind of joke about Jeff's love of birds, but I always fear he'll turn them on me Hitchcock-style." -Fred

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by STPickrell » Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:12 pm

It's been seven years for me with HSAPQ already, hasn't it?

I'm glad that I've had a chance to contribute my little bit of expertise and knowledge to quizbowl over the course of my time with HSAPQ. I've only met a few of you over the years -- if any of you make it out to Frederick or to Greater Dullesland, I'd be pleased to take a long lunch and meet you guys/have you over for dinner.

I apologize for the times I have annoyed anyone, caused anyone to miss a bill payment, etc.

We'll figure out how to re-organize NASAT and put it in good hands, and then HSAPQ will head off into its deserved place in quiz bowl history.
Shawn Pickrell, HSAPQ CFO

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by STPickrell » Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:21 pm

We are migrating hsapq.com to a new web host, so the website will be down temporarily. We will also update hsapq.com on our end.
Shawn Pickrell, HSAPQ CFO

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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Antrobus63 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 8:50 pm

Any word on NASAT? I know this is tough but since it's been a while since the last post... just thought I'd ask if there's anything new. Thanks.
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Re: HSAPQ and NAQT Joint Announcement

Post by Cheynem » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:08 pm

I can safely say HSAPQ is not running NASAT next year. We have, though, got some interest from some folks interested in keeping the tournament going, and we're trying to work out a feasible plan. I realize we're not moving very rapidly--that's my fault, and I hope to get something concrete by the end of the month.
Mike Cheyne
Formerly U of Minnesota

"You killed HSAPQ"--Matt Bollinger

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