Thank you Crichlow
It is heartening to recognize that student-athletes from Porterville Unified schools have been represented in CIF State Championships in recent years; the most notable being a state title for the Strathmore football team. Full tribute for their performances is justifiably accorded to the players, coaches, parents and boosters who put in the time and effort to be successful.
Still, while we’re handing out kudos we should also recognize one person, in particular, who was instrumental in providing the opportunity for our local students to gain a place on the state championship stage. As commissioner of the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) Central Section, Jim Crichlow guided his board in providing the blueprint for leading Central Valley high schools into state champion team competition; an opportunity that has long been dominated by schools in the metropolitan areas of the state.
For decades the assignment of schools to specific divisions for state championships was primarily based on school enrollment; i.e. pitting schools against schools of about the same student population. As time passed this policy began to heavily favor private over public schools in that private schools typically draw from larger attendance areas and also have more highly selective enrollment rules. As the State CIF Council began completing a plan to increase the number of state championship sports, “Crich” and his Board began the process of changing the criteria for division placement from enrollment to “competitive equity”.
Among the other nine CIF sections in the state there were a couple of others who were moving in this direction, however none as quickly and definitively as the Central Section. As we approach the future many, not all, but many of the factors used by the Central Section to determine division placement have been adopted by other sections and the state.
As with any system that includes an element of subjective judgement, the process isn’t perfect. However, the ultimate test of “competitive equity” is revealed in the results of the championship games. Could it be recognized in the Strathmore Spartan victory in a hard-fought title game against a school that was seven times larger? I think so.
Thank you Jim Crichlow for helping to give our students a chance at being the best!
You just had to be there
What a vivid picture of what a great community we have! We all marvel at what a fantastic spectacle it is to see over 1,200 large USA flags flying at the Hillcrest cemetery, but you would be even more impressed if you would have seen how many families, including very young children, participating at around 6 a.m. in the putting all those flags up.
It was a three-step process, and maybe more, but each flag was put onto a long pole, which had to go into a hole that had to be uncapped and then raised to the upright position.
Someone had to take the cap off the hole, then lay the metal flagpole on the ground to have the flag attached and finally put into the vertical position displaying the flag.
A most heart-warming thing for me was seeing how many families were there early morning. The youngsters seemed to be enjoying their part, and another indication of what our great community is seeing the workers from the cemetery staff riding around on their carts passing out small, hand-held USA flags to the kids.
It was such a demonstration of pure teamwork and love for our community and the devotion we have for veterans that I just had to express our admiration for all of those who were there and helping make it another memorable Memorial Day in Porterville.