IGHSAU Adds More Classes

Sports

May 21st, 2011 by Jim Field

The Board of Directors of the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union voted unanimously today to expand to five classes in the sports of basketball, golf, softball, and volleyball beginning with the 2012 softball season.  The largest class, 5A, will be composed of the 40 largest schools in the state in terms of enrollment.  Class 4A will be comprised of the next 48 schools, 3A the next 64, 2A the next 96, and the remaining schools will be classified 1A.

The move comes after a year of study by IGHSAU staff and after recommendations to move to five classes by the IGHSAU Representative Council and the basketball, softball, and volleyball advisory committees, which are comprised of school administrators, coaches, and officials from around the state.

“We asked each group to approach the topic with the goals of ensuring that our classification system was fair and that it balanced the number of schools per class and the enrollment range per class, IGHSAU assistant director Joel Oswald said.  We also wanted to be sure we were not placing unreasonable demands on schools and students regarding travel, loss of school time, or putting any schools at a distinct competitive disadvantage.

The new classification structure allows for an approximate 2:1 enrollment ratio in each class, except for the smallest of 1A schools.  It also ensures that no team would have to play more than four regional games to qualify for the state tournament.

State tournament dates will remain unchanged in the four sports.  More games will be played on the current dates.

The most important thing is that eight more teams and communities have the opportunity to reap the positive life experiences and prestige of qualifying for the state tournament, said IGHSAU executive director Mike Dick.

(Press Release from IGHSAU)