Basketball will be the primary sport in the winter, with the PCSAA likely to draw up two divisions later this fall. The league also will sponsor indoor track and field and cheerleading in the winter, followed by outdoor track and field, baseball and softball in the spring. Automatic bids into the DCSAA tournaments for soccer, volleyball, basketball, softball and baseball will be awarded to the winners of the league.
Football will not be a part of the league in its first year, but Bettencourt hopes the sport will be added for 2014. The league formed too late in the year to adjust existing schedules for football.
Schools will abide by the DCSAA rules and regulations. Charter athletic directors will be expected to monitor potential violations, with the PCSAA and DCSAA only stepping in should a resolution not be met within school administrations.
“We’re not going to be a rogue group,” Bettencourt said. “We’re going to play by a set of rules.”
Charters will pay $125 to compete in each sport, which will cover postseason facilities, officiating and awards expenses. That alone makes joining the league more enticing, according to Friendship Collegiate girls’ basketball Coach Tesha Cunningham, who said the school would pay “thousands of dollars” in fees to compete in the old WCSAA.
“Our administration wanted something new,” Cunningham said.
While the setup will be different, there will still be challenges for the new league in the months to come. The league is still searching for stable ground financially, hoping to find funds to build a Web site. And many schools are still dealing with a lack of facilities, Bettencourt said. Many schools are acquiring gyms, he said, but for outdoor sports particularly, the schools must work with the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation to gain permits and make scheduling work.
“We’re developing this organization from the ground up,” Bettencourt said. “We’re doing this for [kids] so they have a great experience in middle school and high school.”