The Helena-West Helena Central Cougars will be spending a lot of time on the school bus beginning with the 2018 football season after the Arkansas Activities Association voted 17-0 to deny HWHSD’s appeal to stay in their current conference. Central High School has been placed in the 4A-8, which will include Crossett, Hamburg, Warren, Star City, Monticello, Dumas and DeWitt.

Superintendent John Hoy and School Board President Andrew Bagley traveled to Little Rock Sunday afternoon to make the case for the district.  In the presentation, Hoy said, “This is about time on school buses.  The number show that we will spend less time on the bus if we are allowed to remain in our current conference.  It is also important note that Central High School has been forced to changed conference almost every cycle for the past few years.”

After the meeting, Bagley said, “Mr. Hoy is to be commended for very hard work during the preparation stage of this appeal and did a heart-felt job pleading our case today.  The AAA’s decision today is disappointing.  Its treatment of our school district over the years defies polite description.  We have been forced to change conferences five times in the last six classification cycles.  Stuttgart is getting to stay in the 4A-2 and some of the schools in this conference will have to drive through Stuttgart to get to us.”

Bagley continued, “This isn’t the first time this sort of thing has been done to Central High School.  We will close ranks.  Our staff and students are resilient.  The Board and Administration will make sure that our athletes, cheerleaders, and band have what they need to be able to make these trips so that our students get the opportunity to still have these experiences.”

The average trip in this new conference will be 113 miles with the trips to Crossett.