Chess Tournament

Description/ Regulations

The L.E.S.T. Northwest Chess Tournament is a competition conducted using the United States Chess Federation (USCF) National Scholastic Chess Tournament Regulations as a guide. There are four divisions to the tournament (5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th Grades), with a limit of one student from each school for each division. Schools may wish to supply the names of alternates for each grade in case the first person is unable to participate. There will be team awards for the three teams that score the highest number of cumulative points among their school’s chess participants. To facilitate team scoring, an alternate will be allowed to play a match if the original player cannot attend a subsequent match because of conflicting events. Any points that the alternate earns will not go toward the individual player for whom they are filling in, but any points they earn will go toward the team award. A player missing a match because of a conflicting L.E.S.T. event will be at a significant disadvantage as far as earning an individual chess award. Allowing alternates to fill in for a player who has a time conflict will give the opportunity for more students to participate and give more of a “team” feeling for all of the team members from each school.

The following General Regulations apply: 

  1. All games will be played with standard tournament chess sets which will be supplied by L.E.S.T. 
  2. Clocks will not be used, except at the referee’s discretion. 
  3. A referee will be present who will adjudicate or clock games when necessary or at the referee’s discretion. The referee’s decisions will be final. 
  4. Each school must have a coach or advisor present at the start of round one to ensure that players understand and follow all instructions. 
  5. Coaches/parents will not be allowed in the competition room. After each game finishes, players will immediately leave the tournament room to review their game with coaches, parents, and/or teammates outside of the competition room. 
  6. Standard Chess Etiquette (behavior) is expected from all players, including:
    • Don’t talk except to say “check,” “adjust,” “resign” and other necessary chess statements. 
    • If you have questions about moves or feel a mistake has been made, call the referee IMMEDIATELY. It is impossible to make corrections once other moves are made. 
    • If you touch a piece, except by accident, you must move it, assuming the piece can move legally. 
    • Be sure your board is set up correctly: with a black square on your LEFT corner, the white queen on her white square, the black queen on her black square. 
  7. In order to receive credit, winners must notify the chess tournament director after their match has concluded to have their victory entered into the tournament software.


The Chess tournament will be held on Saturday morning. All participants must be present at the check in time (which will be indicated on the official schedule in January) so that play can begin on time. All participants will be scheduled to play five games. The tournament should finish before the closing awards ceremony. This tournament will follow the Swiss System, using computer software to make the pairings, keep the scores, and calculate any necessary tie breaking.

The official time schedule for the chess tournament will be published in January. 

How to Participate

Prior registration is required for this event. Please use the registration form to enter the participants by December 16. Alternates are permitted and can fill in for a participant who has a time conflict due to another L.E.S.T. Northwest event, but they must also be pre-registered. 

On the Saturday morning of L.E.S.T. Northwest, the list of participants from the participating schools will be posted on the wall outside the room where the chess tournament will be played. It will be very helpful if this information could be updated with any changes before check-in time for the first round. Also, if changes are known before L.E.S.T. Northwest begins, those changes may be emailed to the L.E.S.T. Northwest Director so that they may be updated before being posted.

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