Caldwell High’s appeal to join the 4A classification next year was approved by a 9-4 vote Tuesday at the Idaho High School Activities Association’s January board meeting.
The initial petition was denied Dec. 7 by a 9-4 vote.
The Cougars, who have competed in the 5A Southern Idaho Conference since moving up a classification prior to the 2006-07 school year, will return to the 4A SIC next fall. The move will reduce the number of 5A SIC teams to 10 and increase the number of 4A SIC teams to nine.
IHSAA Executive Director John Billetz said the approval includes a stipulation that would eliminate Caldwell from postseason competition if enrollment at the school exceeds 1,280 when numbers are collected on Sept. 15 and Nov. 3.
Billetz said Caldwell Superintendent Roger Quarles told the board that the school’s enrollment is 1,251, down from and average of 1,589 during the 2008-09 school year when the IHSAA last collected information for classification purposes. The drop is attributed to a loss of students to Canyon Springs High School and the Caldwell Freshman Academy.
Based on its current enrollment, Caldwell likely would have moved to the 4A classification in 2012-13, but Monday’s decision accelerated the process. The IHSAA reviews classification every two years and is currently collecting enrollment figures for the next classification period, which includes the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school years.
The current numbers used to determine which classification a school will compete in are: 5A, 1,280 and over; 4A, 640-1,279; 3A, 320-639; 2A, 160-319; 1A Division I, 100-159; and 1A Division II, 99 and below.