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Dear Parents, Coaches and Students,

Reminder - the next tournament is on March 2, 2024 - same place, same time. As we have done for the past 25+ years and per our tradition, we will have the morning award ceremony, and the certificates and medals will be awarded to winners of last tournament. In the afternoon, after the four games are over, we will start the grand ceremony where we will distribute the trophies to the winners of the day.
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT CHAMPIONSHIP TOURNAMENT DATE: We were able to get a booking at the Civic Center a week earlier that initial booking (which was conflicting with the spring break.  The revised date for Championship Tournament is Saturday, 3/2/2024  
Here is additional information for the next steps, so that we can run this season’s tournament smoothly and efficiently. We have close to 675 registrations, so we expect a full house on the tournament days.  Here are some pointers that can help you to plan and prepare. Our goal is to work with you all as a team to be more efficient and provide a great experience to our kids:
  1. Our email, (including auto emails) and newsletters may be stopped by your spam mail filter. We suggest you check the spam mail or whitelist our domain.
  2. SCORING FOR GUPPY and PRIMARY Divisions will be done by scorekeepers inside the hall.  Please inform your players to raise their hands once the game is over, so that the scorekeepers can notate their scores. They should not leave the hall till the score is duly notated.
  3. SCORING FOR ELEMENTARY, MIDDLE and SENIOR Divisions will be done at the front desk.
  4. Registered Coaches: Login to the COACHES CORNER to see the students registered under your name as coach and for your school. Feel free to reset your password if you have forgotten.
  5. New Coaches: If you have not yet registered (i.e. if you are a new coach), please complete your paperwork on the Coaches Corner (on our website) so we can submit it to the school board. Please register online (no mailing required this year for your forms - we are going green one step at a time!).
  6. We encourage you to study our chess manual online and explain the rules to the kids. Click here for the manual/rules. All of the tournaments will be Game 30.
  7. Please remind your players that in order to qualify for this Championship tournament in March, a player must have competed in at least 12 of the possible 16 rounds, and if they have played at least the minimum games, they will qualify regardless of their score in the previous four tournaments.
  8. On the tournament day, please take your team's check-in sheet from the FRONT DESK (around 7:30 am). This sheet must be marked appropriately and submitted by 8:15 am, so that our computer team can start the player pairings for the first game.
  9. We will start our general announcements at 8:30 am in the tournament hall playing area. Please have your team members attend the same with you.
  • We have a full house this season, so please prepare accordingly. FIRST COME FIRST SERVE for indoor / outdoor sitting areas. 
  • Coordinate with your school team's coach for where to meet, reporting, etc. 
  • Anticipate parking challenges - we highly recommend car-pooling. Additional parking spots are available near the school board office on Floral Ave, if needed.
  • Please drive slowly as you approach the Civic Center area. 
  • There will be police protection on site. For security and medical emergencies please call 911.
  • There will be snacks and drinks available on site, but we may not have Taco Bell bus. Feel free to get food delivered or check out the downtown Bartow area restaurants.  
  • Bring your chairs, umbrellas and canopies. Check the weather for unforeseen circumstances and be prepared for Florida weather.
  • Ensure that the Civic Center property is not damaged. Keep an eye on your child for their safety and well-being.
  • Teach the children that whether they win or drop a game, they should exhibit professionalism and respect to the opponent.   
  • ANNOUNCEMENTS ON THE TOURNAMENT DAY: We will keep on providing updates using our Twitter (X) account. Our handle is POLKCHESS.
  • For game, rules and game outcome related questions or concerns, please contact our Tournament Director Mr. Steve Morgan.
  • For general questions, concerns and feedback, please contact the parent volunteers at the front desk. We need your support and participation to keep this tournament spirit alive.
Polk Scholastic Chess is a nonprofit organization established in the State of Florida, offering an extracurricular activity open to all students of Polk County, Florida, enrolled in Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade, including home-schooled students. PSC has been committed since over 25 years to “encouraging academic growth through the game of chess”.



The tournament venue is the Bartow Civic Center (2250 S. Floral Ave, Bartow, FL 33830). Click here for the Bartow Civic Center Google map.
The dates for the 2023 - 2024 season tournaments are:
    First Tournament: Saturday, 10/21/2023
    Second Tournament: Saturday, 11/4/2023
    Third Tournament: Saturday, 12/2/2023
    Fourth Tournament: Saturday, 1/20/2024
    Championship Tournament: Saturday, 3/2/2024 (Players must have played 12 of the 16 rounds to qualify for the Championship). 
Day Schedule (subject to change based on check-in delays):
7:30 am: Check-in begins.
8:30 am: Check-in deadline over. Announcements start.
9:30 am - 10:30 am: First Game
11:00 am - 12:00 pm: Second Game
-- Lunch break -- 
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm: Third Game
2:30 pm - 3:30 pm: Fourth Game. 
VERY IMPORTANT NOTE ON REPORTING TIME & CHECK-IN: On all the tournament days, the registered players present on that day should be checked-in at our tournament hall by the Coaches by 8:15 am. Parents, please ensure with the coach that your children/players are accurately checked-in at the front desk; our front desk team has school-wise check-in forms listing all players so that the coaches can appropriately check them in. This Check-in form ensures that the player is present on the tournament day and can be paired with an opponent on our computer systems. If your child has been registered as an independent player, you as parent/guardian must get him/her checked in. CLICK HERE FOR THE MANUAL & RULES

FACILITIES LAYOUT (not to scale):

Tournament Manual

We believe the game of Chess is an exciting way to teach critical thinking skills, sequencing, sportsmanship, self-control, and many other skills important for academic growth and development. We have seen the progress of students who play chess and their improvement academically. Even if your student is not a high achiever, or has been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder, Chess is for everyone!

The board members are volunteers drawn from a diverse constituency of technocrats, professionals, medical practitioners, school board specialists, parents and entrepreneurs committed to student academics. The board members have contributed their time, energy and funds for maintaining Florida's largest scholastic chess tournament framework for over 30 years with their experience, commitment, diverse opinions and connections, while keeping one common mission.

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