Brevard’s high school lacrosse teams in jeopardy
High schools must decide to sanction or remain clubs
From the FloridaToday.com article by Ed Pierce
With the popularity of lacrosse rising in Brevard County, those wanting to play for their high school may find it much harder next spring.
A new mandate from the organization that governs prep sports is tasking Florida schools to stop financially supporting club teams.
The club lacrosse teams have been forming at area high schools since 2007, when then-Florida High School Athletic Association executive director John A. Stewart instituted a statewide five-year grace period for schools to form lacrosse clubs and then transition to a sanctioned FHSAA sport.
After a review, new FHSAA executive director Roger Dearing, who took over in 2009, is ending the grace period a year earlier than planned, starting in 2012. Schools will either have to finance teams adhering to established FHSAA guidelines or play at a strictly club-only level next season. Against a backdrop of tight public-school budgets, officials say it is not feasible to add lacrosse as a new FHSAA sport in Brevard. While all club teams in Brevard were financially self-sufficient this past season, they would no longer be allowed to play against schools whose teams are sanctioned.
The change, supporters say, will hurt interest in the sport that has blossomed into a high school level and growing youth feeder program of about 1,000 players countywide.
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