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94 Feet-public private high school debate-04-26-2012

Should Private High Schools Be Allowed In State High School Associations?

Editor-in-Chief Michael Austin wants your thoughts on the public vs. private high school debate. Should private high schools be allowed to be a part of state high school associations?

Comment below or email Michael Austin with your thoughts.

Private vs Public
Posted from: Robert Wesley, 12/11/15 at 8:00 PM CST
Despite the claims of not recruiting private schools absolutely recruit. @ examples are a local catholic school in Pa. several years ago received a multi column news story about a # 1 rated basketball player from Washington D.C. being given a wonderful opportunity to gain a free education at this school. I'm certain his basketball skills had nothing to do with it. Second example is Blair Academy wrestling. several years ago they won the national championship with a roster of 4 wrestlers from their home state of New Jersey. They had state champions from New York, Iowa, S. Carolina and also a wrestler
from Turkey and another from Russia. They assembled a world class all star team to compete with public schools for a championship. I hear the complaints about the poor kids from private schools deserve the rewarding experience of competing for a championship, but what about the kids that go to schools that don't recruit and have to compete with hand picked all star rosters. I'm watching the PIAA AAA football semi finals and a public school that went 13-0 during the regular season is loosing 60-20 at half time to a hand picked all star private high school. The private schools should compete for their own championship.
Posted from: Steve, 4/30/12 at 10:05 AM CDT
As a 4AAAA boys coach in PA I must say that it is extremely frustrating to compete against Catholic and private schools that often times have recruited kids that would otherwise be part of our school districts. It certainly is the right of every parent to send their kids where they deem best, but has turned our state playoff system into private league championships. In the last two years 27 of the 32 state finalists (boys and girls, 1A-4AAAA) were catholic or charter schools. That is a complete joke. They need to go away.
Private vs. Public
Posted from: Dan Moore, 4/30/12 at 7:50 AM CDT
This is certainly a subject that will provide many different views. I coached and was athletic director in a private school for 10 years in Ohio. We did NOT recruit. To recruit would go against our state association's rules and I refused to be a part of that or to have my other coaches do it. In Ohio, there are many public school districts that are open enrollment. I saw more recruiting being done by the public schools then any private that I had ties with. In that scenario who has the advantage? The public school that has free tuition or the private who has tuition? So while I don't disagree that some private schools definitely recruit, don't exempt the public school system from it either.
The other side of the issue is the state tournament. Ohio is going through a major "competitive balance" issue right now and has proposed a factor system which takes into consideration these "factors" for competitive balance. It takes in consideration socio-economic situations, past history in state tournament as well as whether the school or district is open or closed area enrollment. No matter the case and whether separated or together, participating in a tournament process is something that both private and public school athletes should have a chance to experience.
private vs public school
Posted from: oscar suarez, 4/29/12 at 4:08 PM CDT
I 've been coaching for twenty years. I coached in both private and public schools. My experience is that they both recruit. Public school use magnet programs to recruit. I find it hypocritical to only point the finger mostly at the private schools.
Private vs Public Schools
Posted from: Pat Neri, 4/28/12 at 4:49 PM CDT
The blatant recruiting by the private schools to include trying to lure current players away from their public school teams gives them a very unfair advantage. They are not limited to residents in their school boundaries. It is not a level playing field, and they should not be allowed to be part of state high school associations.
private vs public
Posted from: Thomas Lentsch Jr, 4/28/12 at 11:54 AM CDT
I coached high school basketball and served as AD for 32 years in Lutheran high schools; 8 in Texas, 6 in Missouri, and 18 in Maryland. In Texas and Maryland private schools are not allowed to be part of the public school associations and thus don't participate in the state high school tournaments. Thus in Texas we formed TAPS (now TAPPS) so I young men and women could experience state championships. In Maryland we have no such state organization and thus have no state tournaments for our student/athletes. I think they miss out on some of the greater experiences of high school athletics because of this. In Missouri public and private schools all belong to the state association and thus get the experience. At no time during my 32 years did I feel our facilities were any better than public schools and at some times felt they were inferior. But we used the concept that being a Lutheran school (225-300 students)we could offer high school athletes more chances to make a team and play. We did not recruit and this is something I made very plain to our coaches that I would not tolerate it. We did visit our local Lutheran grade schools and talked to 8th graders about the advantage of continuing their Lutheran education but I did not and don't see this as recruiting against public schools. Now I don't deny that some private schools do "illegally recruit" and have had even some of the larger private schools here in MD attempt to entice some of our student/athletes to leave us and go to their school. But we have a process in place where we can report these actions to our local private school league officials and hearings are heard to deal with these improprieties and at times as the AD at our school I would call the offending school's AD and express my unhappiness and concern about their coaches action and this many times brought an end to the problem. Our Lutheran high school offered "need based" financial aide but never did we offer "athletic" financial aide. Now there are some private schools here in MD who publicly proclaim they offer "athletic" based aide but they are few and far between. I feel that if AD's would learn to communicate with each other and make it known to their coaches the ethics of high school athletics most of this distrust between public and private high schools could be alleviated. In fact our Lutheran high school here in MD was one block away from a large public high school and we actually worked together in sharing facilities that the other might not have and played regular season games in many sports and felt our athletics benefited from this exposure to each other.
Different Leagues For Private and Public
Posted from: Michael Wallace, 4/27/12 at 11:46 AM CDT
I imagine that each state's situation is different. Here in Colorado, there is no doubt that some private schools recruit and there is no doubt that some public schools recruit.However, what qualifies as recruiting in the eye of the beholder. Is it recruiting when a church provides a scholarship to a kid to attend the affiliated school and is it recruiting when an extremely successful "big name" coach switches schools and is it recruiting when Catholics want to go to Catholic schools and protestants to protestant schools? It depends on your perspective and there is no fix to it. What I believe should happen is if any school wins, for example, two state championships in a row or maybe two of three, the next year that school should play in a higher class and stay in that class as long as they are competitive. However, the state defines competitive.
Private vs Public Schools
Posted from: Kay Foster, 4/27/12 at 7:45 AM CDT
I teach/coach in the public schools, and have sent two kids through the private schools. I have my last kid that will go through the public school process. All of my kids were/are athletes. There is NO DOUBT ABOUT IT that private schools recruit kids. I have been witness to coaches blatantly talking to kids to get them to change schools. I, myself, have also been offered financial help to send my last child to private schools, even though I make a good salary, and it was stated that families that make more money than I, have also been on scholarship. A D1 freshman recruit of ours moved to St. Louis, and looked at to private schools in that area and were awaiting to see which gave the best financial package!! Soooo, there is NO doubt there is an advantage to private schools when they are giving dollars to families for them to compete in their programs.

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