The West Shore School District will continue the conversation in the new year about joining a new athletic conference.
Both of the high schools in the district, Cedar Cliff and Red Land, are in the Mid Penn Conference in the PIAA's District 3.
If a new league were to form, it would be the seventh in District 3, which covers the central Pennsylvania area.
The league is under consideration in the PIAA, and last month the West Shore school board gave district officials permission to continue conversations about joining the new group, which district officials say would keep sports teams closer and save the district money.
The league would be made up of 10 schools with a 25-mile radius, said Tammi Jones, director of secondary education in the district.
The smaller area for league play would allow for more "positive, spirited rivalries" that happen in local games, said Ryan Argot, the district's director of federal programs. Argot said the district is proud of the competitions between Red Land and Cedar Cliff, and hopes for more annual rivalries along those lines.
Travel costs: Argot said the district also has a large potential to save on transportation costs with the smaller conference.
The Mid Penn Conference is the largest league in District 3, with 32 schools currently involved.
Argot said the distances for games often require trips of 40 or 50 miles, but can extend even farther: When the high schools travel to State College for league games, they travel about 90 miles each way.
Argot said the board gave Jones the green light to continue looking into the possibility of changing leagues, which will include further conversations with athletic directors and coaches.
Argot said the school board could potentially vote on the change in January, which would give the district enough time to notify Mid Penn if the board voted in favor of leaving the league.
Argot said the paperwork and technicalities of switching leagues would take some time, and expects the district would join the new league in the 2016-2017 school year if the current pacing continues.
-- Reach Nikelle Snader at firstname.lastname@example.org.