New Teams & Coaches

Getting Started...

Welcome to the Illinois Chess Coaches Association!

What is the ICCA?

The Illinois Chess Coaches Association is a collection of chess coaches from across the state. We have organized together to help promote scholastic chess in Illinois, help other chess coaches, and organize tournaments, competitions, and conferences in the State. The ICCA was instrumental in bringing chess into the schools in Illinois. Today, we organize tournaments, run this website, and provide supplementary awards at the IHSA State Chess Team Tournament.

How can the ICCA help me?

This page has been organized for the express purpose of helping new or prospective chess teams and coaches the help they need to create and build a lasting, strong chess program. The ICCA Team Startup Report is a great overview of what a chess team is, how it functions, and what is required in order to operate a scholastic chess team. Below, you will find some materials designed specifically for new teams and coaches. You will also find links to other pages on this site that experienced coaches use to help their team.

ICCA Team Startup Report.pdf

Who do I ask for help?

Any experienced chess coach is usually willing to help. Chess Conferences are a great place to connect with other coaches who can help you with whatever problem you're having. Also, head over to the ICCA Officers page to find contact information for the ICCA Officers and Heads of Conferences who are usually strong resources for getting answers.

If you need any help or don’t know what to do next, contact a local chess coach or contact the ICCA for help! The ICCA is here to help all Illinois Chess coaches with every aspect of running a chess team.

Below is a list of tips, thoughts, ideas, and links to help you get started:

Speak with your school administrators about starting a club!

Get a team going!

Get connected to your local Chess Conference

Gather materials and resources to help your team learn and grow

Make sure you and your team are familiar with the rules of chess

Schedule regular practices

Make a team placard!