Georgia Splits High School Swimming Into 4 Classes, Scores to 30

At a recent executive committee meeting the Georgia High School Association decided to expand their state swimming championships from two to four meets.

Previously there were only two meets held for two combined groups of classes– one for the 6A and 7A divisions and another for the 1A-5A divisions. Beginning with the next academic year there will still be two meets, with two sets of individual champions, as they have been: one from 1A-5A, the other with 6A and 7A combined. The difference will be that 4 state titles will be awarded: one for classes 1A-3A, one for Classes 4A-5A, one for Class 6A, and one for Class 7A (the biggest schools, generally).

With only two state championship meets a number of swimmers from small high schools often struggled to qualify for a state championships. However, the expansion from two to four team titles will give these swimmers a chance at being competitive within their respective divisions.

In addition, changes were made that will allow the top 30 place finishes in finals to score – whereas in previous years only the top 20 place finishes in finals scored points.

Edit: A previous version of this article indicated that the meet would be split into 4. Instead, it will be split into 2 for the purposes of competition and individual titles, but 4 team awards will be given.

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Former GHSA medalist

Yes let’s continue to water down the competition at the state meet. Yes let’s allow for 30 kids to score because everyone should get to feel as though they contribute to the team at state.
It’s a sad day in Georgia high school swimming. how can you break up the meet further and then say “but we should let more people score, no?”
it’s pathetic. You want to make state? Join a club team. High school sports isn’t about making sure everyone feels included, it’s about competing against the best and if you don’t make finals? Work smarter and harder

G Burdell

You’re obviously from a 6A or 7A school where many people swim club. At smaller schools, our relays had no chance of making finals because the entire relay didn’t swim club.

Also, hypothetically, if every member of a 5A team was on club and every member of a 1A team was on club, the 5A team would still win the meet because they have more swimmers. The point of creating more meets was to account for the enormous difference in team sizes.

5A swimmer

That’s just not true though, because at the past three 1-5A state meets a 3A team has won (Pius, Westminster). Also this doesn’t change the qualifying times, just the number who final, which doesn’t make sense at least for the smaller divisions, where in some cases there were not even 30 entries in events.


Westminster did not win this year and seems to have fewer students swimming club there, so I found it interesting that the rules of the game are being changed now!

Former GHSA Medalist

I will say it does intrigue me how people with no context are able to make ignorant comments assuming to understand the background of a commentor. When I was swimming I was fortunate enough to make state finals with relay teams of 2 other year round kids my sophomore year and no year round kids my junior year (oh and I swam 1-5a). In case you missed it this past year, Westminster won the men’s 200 free relay without a single year round swimmer. Not everyone is supposed to make finals Burdell, that’s not how athletics or life works. Sometimes you don’t get the luck of the draw when it comes to athletes going to your school. Following my graduation… Read more »


Former GHSA Medalist, correction, your wrong, the winning free relay from Westminister had 3 year round swimmer because I swim on the same year round team with all 3 lol……


As a parent of a former GHSA medalist I have to largely agree with you. My child represented a smaller school and qualified for every state event for four years. She represented a school that is a “A” class in size but elects to compete at a higher level. The only discouraging thing for us was that due to the size of the school, we could never field a team with enough depth to win the entire 1-5A championship, though we would have one the 3A


competition is already easy for 1-5a finishing top 5 is like finishing top 20 for 6-7a all high school swimmers that make state 99.5% of them swim club or used to swim club. i see no problem in keeping it the way it already is.


That’s just blatantly wrong. Getting 20th in the big meet isn’t anywhere close to getting 5th at the small meet.

Ghsa swimmer

It reallly isn’t wrong finishing 5 for 1-5a Is like coming in 11-20 6-7a swimming isn’t a poor man sport it is very expensive for a suit proper training and equpment


Just not true! Take the time to compare results from the meet. There were many medalists in the 1-5A meet with faster times than the 6-7a meet.

former HS swimmer

this is quite pathetic @ GHSA swimming

Swim Mom

I for one am not for this. My son has made A finals every year. As a freshman and as a Sophomore he was our only swimmer to make state. We are a small private school that chooses to compete at the higher level. My son has never had a relay at state ever. This year as a Junior we had two swimmers at state. My son was the only man be who made it back for finals and A finals at that. He likes the competition and looks forward to this meet and competing against the best. We could choose to swim in the GISA state meet, but why just to set a state record that nobody cares about.… Read more »


I’m with you Swim Mom! The GHSA seems to be facing many challenges right now, i.e. leaderless without an Executive Director, and I really wonder who comprised the committee that decided to make these changes.

About Rachel Harvill

Rachel Harvill

Rachel has been swimming ever since she can remember. She grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area where she learned to love swimming with the Walnut Creek Aquabears. She took her passion for swimming to Willamette University in Salem, Oregon where she primarily competes in sprint freestyle events. In addition …

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