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Northeast Iowa Conference extends 5 invitations
MFL MarMac, North Fayette Valley, Oelwein, Osage and Sumner-Fredericksburg have the option to join in 2023
The invites have been issued. The guest list is a party of five.
MFL MarMac, North Fayette Valley, Oelwein, Osage and Sumner-Fredericksburg received email correspondence Monday from five Northeast Iowa Conference superintendents, with the aim of expansion beginning with the 2023-24 school year.
Mailed hard copies with the invitations are expected later in the week.
“On behalf of the five ongoing member schools of the oldest athletic conference in Iowa, we would like to extend a formal invitation to become a member of the Northeast Iowa Conference,” the letter reads.
“The intent of our invitation is to find progressive schools that will help maintain the NEIC as a leader in traditional activities and also help establish a vision for what a school conference should look like in the 21st Century.
“The current member schools are looking for schools to join us who want to create a diverse activity environment to provide maximum opportunities for the students in our conference.”
Barb Schwamman, superintendent at Osage, said her school is “looking at all of our options. I have forwarded our letter to all of our coaches.
“We want to do what is best for our students, and for our school. When an opportunity comes up, you should look at it.”
The letter of invitation came three days after NEIC superintendents voted 5-1 to remove Waverly-Shell Rock from the league, the second of two votes necessary for removal.
The five remaining schools are Charles City, Crestwood, Decorah, New Hampton and Waukon.
A look at the invitees:
LOCATION: The majority of the district lies in Clayton County, with the northern end in Allamakee County. It shares a border with current NEIC school Waukon to the north.
BEDS ENROLLMENT: 187 students in grades 9-11 this school year. The smallest of the five schools receiving an invitation.
CURRENT AFFILIATION: Has been a member of the Upper Iowa Conference since 1968.
North Fayette Valley
Location: As the name would suggest, the district encompasses most of northern Fayette County, along with some of northwest Clayton County.
BEDS enrollment: 249 students in grades 9-11 this school year.
Current affiliation: The school — West Union (1939-60), North Fayette (1960-2013) and North Fayette Valley (2013-present) — has been a traditional member of the Upper Iowa Conference.
Location: The district straddles the Buchanan/Fayette county line.
BEDS enrollment: 266 students in grades 9-11 this school year.
Current affiliation: A first-year member of the North Iowa Cedar League, Oelwein has a long history in the NEIC as a charter member in 1920 through the mid-1920s, then remained in the league from 1932 through 2021.
Location: Southern Mitchell Country and northern Floyd County. Shares a border to current NEIC member Charles City to the south and is in close proximity to Crestwood and New Hampton.
BEDS enrollment: 226 students in grades 9-11 this school year.
Current affiliation: Top of Iowa Conference, an 18-school league in north-central Iowa. Prior to that, was in the Northeast Iowa Conference (1920-58) and the North Iowa Conference (1958-2015).
Location: Southeast Chickasaw County, northeast Bremer County and west-central Fayette County. Shares a border with current NEIC member New Hampton to the north.
BEDS enrollment: 202 students in grades 9-11 this school year.
Current affiliation: North Iowa Cedar League, where it has been since 2014. Had been a member of the Upper Iowa Conference prior to that.