The Virginia High School League (VHSL) is implementing a new classification system this school year which revamps the way the state’s high schools are positioned for athletic competition and increases the number of state championship titles.
Starting with the 2013-14 school year, high schools will be divided into six classes – Group 1A to Group 6A – based on enrollment, with two regions in each class. Groups in our part of the state will be divided into North and South regions — there will be no longer be an Eastern Region as we know it. High schools also will move into conferences at the postseason level to determine who advances to the regional tournament. District tournaments will no longer be used for advancement.
This means the 11 high schools in Virginia Beach which vary in enrollment size will be divided into two different classes. It also means that it is now possible for two Virginia Beach high schools to win state championships in the same sport in the same year if they are in different classification levels.
This change was voted on by the VHSL to ensure that schools in the Western part of the state play teams of like size rather than facing opposing schools markedly larger than them to avoid excessive and costly travel.
What does this mean for the Beach District?
The Beach District will still exist and will continue to handle determining eligibilty status at the district level. All Beach District schools will continue to play each other in the regular season and Beach District champions will still be crowned based on regular season records. Beach District Championship Tournaments will still occur in cross country and cheerleading.