Nearly 100 Pennsylvania schools consider leaving PIAA

(abc27) Nearly 100 Pennsylvania school districts will meet at the end of July to discuss the possibility of forming a separate entity to oversee high school sports.

William Hall, the superintendent of the Millcreek Township School District near Erie is leading the meeting. He says superintendents and athletic directors from the across the state will discuss separating public school and private school playoffs, specifically for football and basketball.

The PIAA says it cannot separate the two; the decision would have to be made by the Legislature.

“We’re not interested in segregating our private schools and we’re not interested in breaking the law,” PIAA associate director Melissa Mertz said. “We’re not interested in having those discussions unless the members of the General Assembly want to dictate something different. If they want to change that, by all means, we’ll follow what they say.”

The nonprofit organization has made changes to address concerns of recruiting and transferring in both public and private schools. It created a competition committee to oversee those issues.

“I think it’s very important that we start to look at all of our membership and who’s getting transfers, who’s reloading constantly, and who’s constantly winning and getting transfers in,” Mertz said.

PIAA now has a database to keep track of students who transfer. The board is considering a new system that links transfer numbers to a team’s success.

Hall says five District 3 school districts plan to attend the July 24 meeting in State College; Chambersburg Area, Derry Township, Donegal, Red Lion, and Newport.

He also plans to announce the results of a survey sent to more than 200 superintendents in the state.