The executive committee of the Georgia High School Association could change high school football as we know it at their biannual meeting in Macon on Monday.
The GHSA will consider whether to allow its predominately public school membership to participate in athletic and academic competition with the exclusively private Georgia Independent Schools Association.
Robert Vito, headmaster of GISA-member Stratford Academy in Macon has been pushing this for years.
“If you’re stuck only being able to play members of your own organization, you may be driving past a school in your neighborhood that would be a natural rival," Vito says, describing his own situation. If he could play that school, Vito says, "you would draw a nice gate, save travel money, save time, your students wouldn’t be out of class as long.”
In the past the GHSA has opposed so-called “cross play,” preferring to coax private schools over into their organization. But with some schools feeling the pinch of fuel costs and budget cuts, Vito thinks this year may be different.
“I have my fingers crossed," Vito says. "I think there’s a groundswell, particular on the part of some of the rural public schools, that travel time and travel expense has gotten to the point where they would love to have the ability to add a couple extra games against some GISA-member schools that are close by.”