It’s one of the oldest jokes among those who follow the UIL’s biennial realignment, about Highland Park and the cutoff for the state’s highest classification.
HP might have debunked that myth with a cameo appearance in Class 6A during the past two years (in which they were one of the state’s smallest schools), but beginning next fall, the Scots will return to the friendly confines of Class 5A.
HP is among the schools with an enrollment that fell just below the new 6A threshold unveiled by the UIL on Friday. The district turned in an enrollment snapshot number of 2,120, which is 12 students more than in 2014.
However, the 6A cutoff number will rise to 2,150, meaning HP will once again be one of the biggest schools in 5A, which is formerly 4A, in which the Scots resided for 25 years before being bumped up for the current two-year cycle.
The change will affect all UIL team and individual sports (not including gymnastics and lacrosse, for example). And although HP has enjoyed plenty of success since jumping to 6A in fall 2013, the biggest difference might be in postseason play in team sports, where the Scots will no longer face potential matchups against the biggest schools in the state.
The new Class 5A structure will include schools with enrollments between 1,100 and 2,149 students. Again, this will take effect in fall 2016.
New district alignments will be unveiled on Feb. 1 for most sports, including football and basketball, so there will be plenty of time to speculate before then on which old foes might be reunited.