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Private Multiplier Proposal Still Has Hurdles To Clear

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By KSHSAA Covered Staff

Kansas is a step closer to seeing a multiplier formula applied to classifying private schools.

But the next two steps are big ones still to be made.

In last week’s vote by its Kansas State High School Activities Association member schools, a proposal to institute a multiplier to private school enrollment figures for classification purposes was passed by both a majority of schools and classifications. Votes were made via ballots submitted to the KSHSAA which were due on June 14.

In order to pass, a majority of schools (at least 177 of 353 member schools) had to vote in favor of the proposal. In addition, a majority of the classes (at least four of six) also had to vote in favor.

Those numbers were attained. Four of the six classes voted in favor of the proposal – 4A, 3A, 2A and 1A all voting in favor with 6A and 5A voting against – while 216 schools voted in favor with 139 voting against.

“The proposed amendments to the Classification system took a significant next step forward with approval by the leadership of our member schools,” KSHSAA executive director Bill Faflick said. “The vote signifies the established system works as the details of the proposal were developed by the Classification Work Group and then reviewed throughout the past year by stakeholder groups including students, coaches, and administrators. Following this statewide education effort, the proposal was refined and then supported by membership. While the proposal still must be approved by the State Board of Education, and then ultimately be granted relief with an amendment to Kansas statute, we are now closer to seeing a private school enrollment multiplier to be included in the annual school classification system.”

Just how close that is remains to be seen.

The next step sends the proposal to the Kansas State Board of Education, which must approve a change to be made to the Kansas State Statute that currently mandates that KSHSAA classifications are determined strictly on student attendance numbers alone. K.S.A. 2014 Supp. 72-114 reads as follows:

K.S.A. 2014 SUPP. 72-7114. High school activities association; board of directors, executive board, appeal board; articles and bylaws; reports; classification system; executive director and personnel; application of open meetings law and open records law.
(a) Any association with a majority of the high schools?of the state as members and the purpose of which association is the statewide regulation, supervision, promotion and development of any of the activities defined in K.S.A. 72-7117, and amendments thereto, and in which any public high school of this state may participate directly or indirectly shall:
(1) On or before September 1 of each year make a full report of its operation for the preceding calendar year to the state board of education. The report shall contain a complete and detailed financial statement under the certificate of a certified public accountant.
(2) File with the state board a copy of all reports and publications issued from time to time by such association.
(3) Be governed by a board of directors which shall exercise the legislative authority of the association and shall establish policy for the association.
(4) Submit to the state board of education, for its approval or disapproval prior to adoption, any amendments, additions, alterations or modifications of its articles of incorporation or bylaws. If any articles of incorporation, bylaws or any amendment, addition or alteration thereto is disapproved by the state board of education, the same shall not be adopted.
(5) Establish a system for the classification of member high schools according to student attendance.
(6) Be subject to the provisions of the Kansas open meetings law.
(7) Be subject to the provisions of the open records law.

In the proposal to change the statute, the verbiage “and other means” would be added to No. 5 to allow for the following multiplier to be implemented under Section 2. That section would then read as follows with the multiplier format approved by the KSHSAA member schools.

Art. 5: Private schools will be subject to an enrollment multiplier factor when determining classification numbers.  Factors for determining the multiplier include school location, socio-economic status, and championship factor.  To calculate the multiplier number, the following criteria will be applied:

Any private school that has won five or more state team championships in the most recent five school years will have a multiplier applied to their classification enrollment count. These select private schools will begin with a 1.0 multiplier.  The following factors will be added to the multiplier for each select private school.

Championship Factor – cumulative state championships over the previous 5-year period (not activity specific, team activities only).?
10+ championships:  + 0.30
5-9 championships:  + 0.15
NOTE: If a private school has won less than 5 championships in the previous five-year period, the multiplier remains 1.0.

Geographic Population Factor – public school attendance area in which the private school is located.
Within a 5A/6A community:  + 0.30
Within a 3A/4A community:  + 0.15
Within a 1A/2A community:  + 0?
NOTE:  If a private school does not meet the Championship Factor, the Geographic Population Factor would not take effect.

Socio-Economic Population Factor
0-20% Free/Reduced students reported:  + 0.15
>20% Free/Reduced students reported:   + 0
NOTE:  If a private school does not meet the Championship Factor, the Socio-Economic Population Factor would not take effect.

NOTE: The multiplier impacts classification for all school activities and will be applied to both general and football classification numbers. Schools cannot move up more than one classification based upon the multiplier. The multiplier enrollment count will not force a school to move from 8-person to 11-person football or from 6-person to 8-person football.  Geographic location is determined by the physical address of the private school. If Free/Reduced data is not collected and/or reported, it is assumed to be zero.  There is no process for appeal to change a classification that has already been changed by the multiplier.

If the Kansas State Board of Education approves the multiplier, it will then head to the Kansas Legislature, which must approve the change to the current statute.

The private school multiplier has been a hot-button topic among member KSHSAA schools for quite some time, picking up more momentum in recent years.

Yet even in passing the school vote, there was still a large number of schools not in favor of the multiplier.

Only two of the state’s 28 private schools voted in favor of the multiplier – Class 1A schools Junction City-St. Xavier and Wichita Classical – while four did not submit votes, which were counted as no votes.

In Class 6A, only six schools voted in favor of the multiplier – Blue Valley, Blue Valley North, Blue Valley Northwest, Blue Valley West, Hutchinson and Liberal. While 5A did not vote in favor as a class, it was nearly an even split with 17 voting for the multiplier. Eight schools in 5A did not submit votes, counting as no votes to swing the class.

In all, 82 schools did not submit votes, resulting in no votes.

Class 4A had the largest push toward the multiplier with 32 of the 36 schools voting in favor. Two of the votes not in favor were the only two private schools in the classification, Bishop Miege and Topeka Hayden and the other two were ballots non-submitted votes.

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Derek Nester
Derek Nesterhttps://sunflowerstateradio.com
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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