Kingsley Area Schools will join the newly-formed Northern Shores Conference which will include seven other districts of comparable size
It's a whole new ball game.
Starting in the 2024-2025 school year, Kingsley Area Schools will join the newly-formed Northern Shores athletic conference in all sports and extra-curricular activities besides football.
The Northern Shores Conference will include Boyne City, Charlevoix, Elk Rapids, Grayling, Harbor Springs, Kalkaska, Cheboygan, and Kingsley. The new conference was born out of inter-district discussions seeking to create a more competitive balance between schools of similar demographics and sizes.
Official discussions to create a new league began in February and an agreement to move forward with the Northern Shores Conference was signed by Superintendents in April.
Athletic Director Mitch Miggenburg says Kingsley has been competing in the Northwest Conference for at least 40 years, if not longer.
"The Northwest Conference has been really, really good to us. This move doesn't have anything to do with us being unhappy there, it's just that Kingsley has grown and most of the other schools in the NWC have decreased in size or stayed the same," said AD Mitch Miggenburg. "We want to put our kids in the best position, competitively, to
prepare them for the MHSAA tournaments, because in the last few years, Kingsley has become very competitive at the State level."
Key aspects of the new conference will be the support of student events including athletics, but extending into the arts and academics as well.
"The hope is to make everything more collaborative in sports and also in things like leadership summits, Fine Arts activities, band, music programs, and more," said Mr. Miggenburg.
"This change is to provide our kids with a little more competition in sports across the board."
"We still have the ability to play the schools in the Northwest conference and we'll still be scheduling some of those rivalry games. We've built so many relationships in the last few years and we will continue to compete against those schools in non-conference play."
Kingsley Area Schools' will play in the Northwest Conference for the duration of this school year and for all of 2023-2024, with the change becoming effective in the fall of 2024.