The Oregon School Activities Association’s (OSAA) Classification and Districting Committee has finalized its recommendations to be presented to the OSAA executive board and member delegation on Monday.
With the recommendation comes a number of changes for the Far West League (FWL) and Brookings-Harbor High School’s competition.
If the board carries the recommendations — which it should — then the Bulldogs of Sutherlin will move from the FWL into the Sky-Em League with Cottage Grove, Elmira, Junction City, Sisters and Sweet Home; and Marshfield will take up a 4-year permanent residence in the FWL.
Marshfield will be able to make that move based on the new cutoff numbers for the 4A classification.
Using the Average Daily Matriculation (ADM) numbers each school reports, the OSAA has set the cutoff for 4A schools at 675 students at the most to 331 students at the least.
BHHS falls at 462, close to four of the other five schools in the league. The outlier in the FWL is Marshfield at 635 students.
Now, if Marshfield’s numbers were straight students and there were no other variables involved that would be something for the league to reckon with, but Marshfield’s actual ADM is 752 and has been adjusted by 117 students based on its socioeconomic factor (SES).
Every school under the OSAA blanket gets to adjust its ADM based on the SES, but for most schools that adjustment doesn’t factor into their classification because they are right in the middle of their respective league.
With Marshfield the adjustment drops them from 5A to 4A and into a league where they outnumber the other schools by an average of 210 students.
The SES is factors how many students in the school receive free or reduced lunch as reported to the state and, while Brookings-Harbor, South Umpqua and Siuslaw report close to 50 percent of students on free lunch, Marshfield and North Bend report more than 70 percent, allowing them to subtract more students and drop down into the 4A classification.
So it looks as though Marshfield is in the Far West League to stay until at least 2018 when the committee will make new recommendations.