New 'multiplier' changes IL high school championships
Bloomington, Ill. – The association that oversees high school sports in Illinois has passed new rules meant to level the playing field between public and private schools
The rule will take effect in time for the state's basketball tournaments and other spring sports championships.
The Illinois High School Association said Thursday that its member schools approved new rules that were prompted by complaints that private schools were winning an unfair share of state titles. The vote was 450-143.
The so-called "multiplier" will increase the enrollment of private schools by 65% for purposes of placing them into classes for state championship tournaments. Schools are placed in classes based on enrollment, with Class A being comprised of smaller schools than Class AA. The multiplier means a school with 100 students, for example, will actually have 165 in the eyes of the IHSA, which might move that school to the next class.
Supporters say the multiplier compensates for the broader geographical area from which private schools can draw student athletes.
Officials say about 30 schools that have competed in Class A will move up to play larger Class AA schools.