The following comes from a Mar. 13 story on the Angelus website, the online version of the Los Angeles archdiocese paper, the Tidings.

Four parochial high schools (three of them Catholic) within Los Angeles and Ventura Counties were upheld March 7 in their lawsuit against the California Interscholastic Federation, and will not have to switch leagues that would have required their athletic teams to travel hundreds of extra miles over the course of the year.

An arbitrator ruled in favor of St. Bonaventure High School of Ventura, Damien High School of La Verne, St. Lucy’s Priory High School of Glendora (all Catholic) and Oaks Christian High School of Thousand Oaks. Lawyers for the four schools protested the CIF-Southern Section’s decision last year to remove the four from mixed public-private school leagues and place them in new, predominantly religious school leagues, effective with the 2014-15 school year.

The decision, the schools’ lawyers asserted, carried religious bias and was made without due process. Had the CIF-SS decision been upheld, the schools would have been placed in leagues where other teams were located, in some cases, 50 to 100 miles from their campuses — requiring the teams to spend additional time and money in traveling to and from league contests.

The four schools will now be placed in the “parochial area” for the 2014-18 “re-leaguing cycle,” which is reviewed every four years. Damien and St. Lucy’s will be placed in the Mt. SAC Area, and Oaks Christian and St. Bonaventure in the Northern Area….

Marc Groff, principal of St. Bonaventure, said the favorable decision is good for all schools involved, including those his school would have played in home-and-away league action.

“It’s a two-way street,” he said. “Traveling to places like San Pedro, La Puente, Montebello, inner-city Los Angeles, Lakewood — they were the Catholic schools in those areas that we we’re going to play, and conversely they were going to have to come up here to play us.”

The prospect of “driving up here across the messiest freeways in the United States for a three o’clock soccer game,” Groff said, could not have been appealing to other schools….

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