CHIPLEY, Fla. (WMBB) – The FHSAA released new high school football classifications for the 2021 season in March, and Chipley High School is appealing their reclassification.
Chipley went from a 1A to being reclassified as a 3A school.
However, Chipley doesn’t actually have enough students to be classified as a 3A school.
Athletic director Marcus Buchanan said because of COVID-19, the Washington Academy Of Varying Exceptionalities (WAVE) and the Washington Institute for Specialized Education (WISE) schools temporarily closed and cause Chipley’s numbers to spike.
“It was unfortunate that the situation happened the way it did where the temporary spike in numbers coming exactly when they wanted to count,” Buchanan said.
Buchanan said he hopes the FHSAA will move them back to 1A, but they are prepared to play in whatever class they put them in.
He just wants what is best for the student-athletes at the school.
“You want to put your kids in the best position to have success that’s the job of a coach and so the easiest way to explain it would be if you go in your car and drove around Jacksonville, you drove around Tallahassee, you drove around Gainesville, even Ocala or Pensacola and then you get in your car and come drive around Chipley. You tell me if they are the same,” Buchanan said.
Chipley will find out at the end of April if their appeal has been approved by the FHSAA.