LMS league change moves to next step

Langley Middle School is a step closer to moving its athletic teams into a new league.

The school, which has competed for years in a league of 15 large middle schools that feeds 3A and 4A high schools, may move into a new athletic league by next school year in order to compete with teams of similar talent pools.

The proposed change was first announced at a South Whidbey Board of Education meeting in February. On Wednesday, the school held an informational meeting about the proposed league change. Tim Gordon, the school's vice principal and athletic director, said Thursday that the meeting -- which was attended by about 30 parents and school staff -- went well. The next step, he said, is to make a formal presentation about the change to schools staff and to the school's site council.

If all goes well at that level, the school will make the change.

With 177 students in the seventh and eighth grades -- the level at which students may participate in school-sponsored sports -- LMS has been competing in the North County League. The other North County schools have an average of 354 students in those two grades.

The school's proposed move would be to the Cascade League, which includes some school districts that compete with South Whidbey at the high school. It also includes Coupeville.

Making the change will force the school to drop its small girls softball program, because the 10 teams that compete in the Cascade League do not field teams. However, the league does offer soccer, something that was not available in the North County League.

If the school changes leagues, it will do so in time for the start of the 2003-2004 school year. The decision to change leagues is up to LMS school administrators; the board of education will be informed if a change is made.

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