The South Carolina High School League released its proposed realignment plan for 2018-20 on Wednesday, and the proposal featured only one change – and no surprises – for local schools.
The only change is Bluffton High School’s imminent return to Class 4A, where the Bobcats would rejoin regional rivals Beaufort High School and Hilton Head Island High School in Region 7-4A along with Charleston-area schools R.B. Stall and Berkeley.
“It’s what we expected,” Bluffton athletics director Cody Slaughter said. “I think it will be a smooth transition with two other district teams, which is the same situation we are in currently. It extends our travel a bit farther but opens up the possibility of developing new region rivalries.”
That region alignment is contentious for the Charleston schools, though, and both reportedly indicated they will appeal to move up to Class 5A to minimize travel. A potential fix could involve swapping one of the schools with Colleton County High School in Walterboro.
Battery Creek High School, May River High School, and Ridgeland-Hardeeville High School would join Lake Marion and Wade Hampton in Region 7-3A under the proposal, while Whale Branch Early College High School would be in Region 5-2A along with Allendale-Fairfax, Bamberg-Ehrhardt, Barnwell, and Woodland.
Schools have until 1 p.m. on Aug. 16 to submit appeals in writing to the SCHSL Executive Committee, which will hear the appeals on Aug. 24 before finalizing the realignment plan.