South Carolina legislators looking into competitiveness gap in HS sports

Photo credit South Carolina High School League

State lawmakers are now looking into closing the competitive gap in high school sports around the Palmetto State.

Many around South Carolina's high school sports scene have issues with public charter schools competing against traditional public schools. One of the reasons is that the charter schools are not bound to districts, any student who lives in South Carolina can enroll at any public charter school in the state.

State House Education Committee Chair Shannon Erickson said " We have schools fighting amongst themselves and out children are being pushed put of the sport they love".

Much of the controversy stems from the Midlands where a group of schools have vowed to forfeit region games against football power Gray Collegiate. Keenan High in Columbia is in that group, their principal cited in an email that forfeiture was "best for morale against Gray Collegiate".

The committee met Monday and heard from SCHSL Commissioner Jerome Singleton. He told them that the league's biggest issue currently is "lopsidedness" in the small school classes. Gray Collegiate currently competes in 2A.

Singleton said a temporary law enacted by the General Assembly prevents the SCHSL from leveling the playing field. Singleton said " That proviso says all schools have to be treated exactly the same, that puts us in a bind. To create a level playing field we have to have the authority to address it, as we see fit".

Erickson disagreed with Singleton's interpretation of the law She says she would like proposals on a resolution by the start of the next legislative session in January.

Featured Image Photo Credit: South Carolina High School League