The Republican Party wants to dissolve the high school sports administration in North Carolina. Why are you in such a hurry?


State Senate Republicans regularly ignore the needs of underfunded public schools, but rush to dismantle one aspect of well-funded and widely-supported public schools: governing high school sports. Some people are working on it.

Bill passing the legislature Dissolve Independent North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) And replace it with a 17-member state committee starting in the 2022-2023 school year. Nine members of the proposed committee will be appointed by the Governor, four by the Speaker of the House and four by the President pro tempore of the Senate.

It’s not clear why this improves, but it can confuse high school sports.

NCHSAA has governed high school sports for over a century. Resolving it can result in the loss of years of experience and confusing procedures for implementing playoffs, dealing with rule violations, and recruiting and retaining game players. The proposed state committee may also expose high school sports to political interference in areas such as conference assignments and disciplinary action.

Senator pushes bill

Nonetheless, Republican senators Todd Johnson of Union County, Tom McInnis of Richmond County, and Vickie Sawyer of Iredell County House building 91 – Measures originally aimed at helping children with autism – and replaced it with the one entitled “Accountability and Fair Play in Athletics”.

As the title of the bill suggests, Senators are angry at their thinking of NCHSAA’s rulemaking and penalties, and the lack of transparency in how their resources are distributed. With over $ 40 million in total assets, the NCHSAA is the wealthiest high school athletics association in the United States.

The widespread assets of the association and the unnatural fit between private nonprofits and public schools raise concerns about its transparency and accountability. But overall, NCHSAA is a competent organization that has served young athletes for generations.

As the governing body was criticized, many began to support it, including the NC Coach Association, the NC Athletic Directors Association, and the National Federation of State High Schools. Carissa L. Nihoff, Executive Director of the National Group, I wrote last week NCHSAA is “one of the most respected associations” in a group of 51 members, and its program is “emulated by other associations across the country.”

HB 91 has passed the Senate Education and Finance Committee, but still has to pass the Senate and the House of Representatives. Governor Roy Cooper is not in the position of the bill.

Reform instead

NCHSAA Que Tucker committee Her group was open to making changes in response to legislators’ concerns, but told the editorial board that it would require cooperation rather than conflict.

“We’re not a perfect organization. Former basketball coach and NCHSAA 30-year veteran Tucker said,” We understand that, but people don’t dismantle us. You can only do that if you are willing to work with us. “

Senator Jay Chaudhuri, a Democrat in Wake County and a member of the school board, said Republicans had real concerns about NCHSAA, but they don’t need to be replaced immediately.

“I think the decision to completely disband an organization that has managed more than 20 diverse sports from Murphy to Manteo for more than 100 years is like calling a ball game twice instead of nine,” he said. Says. Told The News & Observer..

Senator is right. After serving high school athletes for over a century, NCHSAA deserves time to answer Congressional concerns, improve its transparency and explain its finances. Providing that opportunity is good sportsmanship and good governance.