Suburban League staying at 15 schools

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Suburban League Commissioner Keith Walker announced May 19 that after a long and complex process, the 15-team Suburban League has decided to remain at that number for the 2015-16 school year.

Aurora is scheduled to move from the Chagrin Valley Conference to the Suburban League's small school division.

"The necessity of looking for another team was brought about in February when Cloverleaf informed the league it would leave to join the Portage Trail Conference," said Walker.

"Prior to Cloverleaf's departure, the newly expanded Suburban League was poised to begin the 2015-16 school year with 16 teams, divided into two conferences by enrollment."

In March and April, the league requested a letter of interest from any school desiring to fill the vacancy in the American (small school) Conference. Four schools -- Bedford, Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, Maple Heights and Canal Fulton Northwest -- submitted applications of consideration for league membership.

On April 16, those four schools interviewed with league representatives, including superintendents, principals and athletic directors from all 15 schools.

To gain acceptance, the league constitution requires a three-fourths majority (12 of 15 schools) to OK any application. After much discussion, school visitations and multiple votes, the three-fourths majority could not be reached.

"The Suburban League and its members have nothing but admiration, praise and respect for the four schools who applied,"said Walker. "The time spent on preparation and presentation is truly appreciated; the league certainly had hoped that the voting outcome would have yielded a three-fourths majority and thus, a new member."

The SL will move ahead with seven teams -- Aurora, Barberton, Copley, Highland, Kent Roosevelt, Revere and Tallmadge -- in the American Conference, while the National Conference -- Brecksville, Cuyahoga Falls, Hudson, Nordonia, North Royalton, Stow, Twinsburg and Wadsworth -- will have eight teams.

"All 15 schools will continue to work cooperatively to add a 16th school in the future," said Walker.

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