The GHSA’s Executive Committee will have the opportunity to vote on a radical reclassification plan for the state’s high schools on Monday.
On Sunday, the Reclassification Committee voted 7-5 to present what is dubbed the “4/8 plan” to the full board on Monday in Macon. Under the proposal, the state’s existing five classifications would be reduced to four, and there would be two state championships per class for an overall total of eight.
“I really don’t have a clue yet, and this sounds really strange after all these years, about how the [Executive Committee's] 50 members are going to vote on this,” Dr. Ralph Swearngin, the GHSA’s Executive Director, told the AJC on Sunday.
“Even with Sunday’s discussion, there does not appear to be any consensus. People who are for the ‘4/8′ are for it for a couple of reasons. People that are against it are against it for a couple of reasons. There appears to be nothing clear-cut that we’ve seen that is going to solve all the problems.”
The idea behind the “4/8 plan” is to allow member schools to play teams closer in proximity during the regular season and closer in student enrollment during the playoffs. For example, Class AAAA may have 100 schools in it, with 50 largest and smallest split up for the playoffs to compete for Div. I and II state championships in each sport. Some have expressed worries with the logistics with increasing to eight state championships, such as 16 overall championship games for girls and boys basketball.
“I think the people behind ‘4/8′ are going to spend more time at Monday’s presentation explaining how to work around some of the difficulties and problems associated with this plan,” Swearngin said. “It will be interesting to see how everything goes.”
The Executive Committee has three options: Approve, deny or table the proposal for further research. If passed on Monday, the new classification structure would take effect in the fall of 2012.
– Michael Carvell