Kansas State BOE approves proposal to address perceived competitive imbalance in high school sports

KSHSAA State Championship banner at the Kossover Tennis Complex in Topeka
KSHSAA State Championship banner at the Kossover Tennis Complex in Topeka(WIBW)
Published: Sep. 14, 2022 at 11:48 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - The Kansas State Board of Education at its meeting Wednesday, narrowly approved a proposal from the Kansas State High School Activities Association (KSHSAA) to address a perceived competitive imbalance between public and private school athletics in the state.

In a 6-4 vote, the state board approved a multiplier that would apply to private schools that have won five or more team state championships, across all sports, in the last five years.

If that happens for a private school in Kansas, they would move up at least one class in the KSHSAA classification. So, in effect, a 4A private school that wins at least five team state titles in five years would move up to 5A. Currently, the classification for every school, public and private, is based only on student enrollment.

The final decision on whether that will change is now in the hands of the Kansas legislature. It’s unknown when state lawmakers could take a final vote on the issue.

Last month, KWCH reporter Shawn Loging spoke with Paola High School Principal Jeff Hines who said he’s been digging into the issue for at least a decade and has data to back up reasoning for concerns.

“Private schools in our state make up less than 8% of membership but they’re winning nearly 40% of the championships,” Hines said. “You should expect 8% of the schools to win roughly 8% of the championships.”