Public, private governance being mulled

High Schools

April 28, 2005|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

The chance for state private and public school athletes to play under the same governing body may be "far off" and "iffy at best," but the state's top public school athletic official said he is exploring the prospect.

"We're not talking about state championships, although naturally, that would come. What we're talking about is a philosophical framework under which all kids from across the state could play under the same set of regulations," said Ned Sparks, director of the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association.

"This thing has been under discussion for about six months. But it's just an idea. There's no commitment, no decision, no timetable, no go-ahead or endorsement from the local superintendents."

Maryland's is one of only five state associations for public high schools nationwide that does not permit private schools to compete for the same state titles, according to a report in yesterday's Washington Post. Sparks brought the prospect before the state's 24 local superintendents on April 1.

Joining the MPSSAA would mean the private schools would have to "conform to an agreed-upon set of rules and regulations."

"These kinds of things can cause anxiety and raise people's hopes and [then they] find out there's nothing to it," Sparks said. "In our mind, it's not a story at this time. Whether this materializes is iffy, at best."

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