Athletic Conference Affiliation


Frequently Asked Questions

List of 16 frequently asked questions.

  • What is the difference between the ISAS, SAES, and SPC organizations?

    Casady is accredited by the Independent Schools Association of the Southwest (ISAS) and the Southwestern Association of Episcopal Schools (SAES). In September, we completed our 10-year evaluation for accreditation with both organizations. Casady School completes this process every 10 years as required by the ISAS and SAES. This will not change.

    Our community has numerous networking opportunities through the ISAS, which is comprised of more than 90 schools. ISAS "promotes the highest professional and ethical standards of educational excellence for independent schools in the region and recognizes by formal ongoing accreditation those schools which demonstrate adherence to its standards." Casady School was a founding member of the ISAS Arts Festival and hosted the 50th anniversary of the Arts Festival in 2017.

    In addition, Casady School began in 1947 as a ministry of the Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma. The spirit and values of the Episcopal Church are reflected in every aspect of our mission and through accreditation by the SAES.

    The Southwest Preparatory Conference (SPC) is a competitive athletics organization for Independent Schools.
  • What is the OSSAA and is the organization only focused on athletics?

    The original intent of the organization in 1911 was to help schools develop and administer interscholastic athletics and to oversee state high school athletics.

    As the association and school membership steadily increased through the years, the organization was renamed the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association and evolved from primarily athletics to also incorporate school activities and competition for music (band, orchestra, choir), speech, debate, drama (one-act play), academic bowl, cheerleading, and eSports.

    Casady will consider the additional opportunities that are now open to us through the OSSAA.
  • How are the SPC and OSSAA organizations run?

    The SPC operates under one full-time employee, the commissioner, and the Operations Committee. The SPC board is made up of the Heads of School.

    The OSSAA has a dedicated 15-person staff who run the day to day operations. They are guided by a 15-member board. Every major state association, like the OSSAA, is a member of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), which is the national organization that writes the rules of play for high school sports.
  • Why did it take so long to make this announcement?

    Conducting surveys of parents, alumni, and UD students and faculty; compiling data regarding both the SPC and OSSAA; determining the main themes of Wellness, Development, Academics, and Community; and preparing presentations to the board to review and evaluate the benefits of conference affiliation was done through a measured, thoughtful, and intentional process. This is a historic decision for the School. An accurate and methodical evaluation process was at the forefront, which takes time.

    In our communications strategy, it is our goal to present an enormous amount of information through various platforms and at specific times so that our Casady Community can consume, absorb, and better understand "The Why" behind this momentous decision that directs the School's future.
  • Why is the School's Athletics Philosophy based off of the Strategic Academic Plan?

    The Strategic Academic Plan, along with the School's mission and beliefs statements, make up the lens through which we develop programs, curriculum, and planning. The Athletic Pillars and Philosophy were formed while aligning with each pillar of the Strategic Academic Plan and ultimately our Portrait of a Graduate.
  • What are Casady's Athletic Pillars

    Casady's Athletic Pillars of Success are Wellness, Development, Community, Character, and Sportsmanship.
  • What do the two circles represent in the crossover between Academics and Athletics?

    The two sets of pillars that appear in both our Strategic Academic Plan and in our Athletic Pillars for Success inform both our academic and athletic programs in the student-athlete experience at Casady. The overlap is intentional, as we believe that Student Wellness and Community Engagement are equally important for students both in the classroom and on the field. What emerged in our conference affiliation review was the impact that our athletic conference has on these central pillars.
  • Why did you form your opinions and recommendations around only three Athletic Pillars and not around Character and Sportsmanship?

    Character and Sportsmanship are important to the development of every student-athlete and can be learned through competition, teamwork, and leadership. What emerged in our conference affiliation review was the impact that our athletic conference affiliation has on these central pillars including academics. In particular:

    Student Wellness
    • Fair competition based on school size.
    • Less travel required for athletics.
    • Opportunity to increase participation rates.
    Development of student athletic skills:
    • Fair competition based on school size.
    • More opportunities for JV and Middle Division teams to play.
    • Larger pool of coaches from which to choose.
    • Formalized requirements for coach training.
    Academics as it incorporates several aspects of the student-athlete experience:
    • Less bus travel time and “away time” for coaches and student-athletes.
    • Less homework completed on a bus.
    • Most sports gain days back in the classroom.
    • Less missed class time.
    • More student engagement.
    • Fewer review days for students in the classroom not traveling for athletics.
    • More durable learning in the classroom.
    Community Engagement and the possibilities for the Casady Community:
    • Local play allows more spectators on campus:
      • Increased school spirit, morale, and improved culture;
      • School rivalry brings excitement and interest;
      • Increased awareness of Casady as a recruiting tool;
      • Increased local media coverage (including All-City and All-State recognitions);
    • Cost savings from bus travel can be used to make athletic improvements for the whole school.
  • If Field Hockey and Boys' Volleyball aren't sports in OSSAA, how will these two Casady programs compete?

    In February, the SPC Board accepted Casady's formal proposal to remain associated with the conference for Field Hockey and Boys’ Volleyball in the event our application with the OSSAA is approved for all other sports.

    As we developed our proposal, we gained insight from each person with whom we spoke at the schools in the SPC. This allowed us to further outline compelling reasons for Casady to remain in the SPC for two sports while playing the majority of our sports in our primary athletic conference, which we anticipate will be the OSSAA. We identified a number of innovative solutions that revolved around creating this new
    Associate Member affiliation within the SPC.
  • What is the timeline to move to OSSAA and when will we know if OSSAA has accepted our application?

    Casady is in the process of compiling the materials necessary to complete the application and other requirements for membership in the OSSAA. Once our application has been submitted, the OSSAA board of directors will review the package and assess extending membership to Casady. We will alert the Casady Community as we learn more about the application and status.

    Our expectation is that Casady will remain in the SPC through the 2022-23 school year and transition to the OSSAA in 2023-24.
  • Will this affect my student's ability to be accepted into a good college?

    Athletic conference affiliation does not have an influence on college acceptances and is not a factor when colleges evaluate a student.
  • I've heard that girls' sports will be at a disadvantage. Is this true and how do you counteract to ensure our female athletes are fully supported?

    Softball and girls' soccer would move to different seasons in the OSSAA compared to when they are in the SPC. Moving both soccer and softball allows our female students more opportunities for play at the MD, JV, and Varsity levels since this move makes both sports in season in Oklahoma.

    Female athletes would most likely see the most improvement from a conference move. The board was able to hear and read Coach Impact Statements from each sport. The softball coach stated that while Casady is a member of SPC, softball will continue to be somewhat irrelevant because we can't schedule enough games or create enough hype for the program to thrive since it's an out-of-season sport compared to OSSAA.

    We also believe we are doing a bigger disservice to current and future female athletes by not offering a competitive schedule for both softball and soccer. 

    We also recognize that there are only two official winter sports for females in the OSSAA, which presents an opportunity for us to think outside the box. We are considering other sport options that we think our student-athletes would enjoy to fill any gap.
  • What is an Independent Schedule for Football?

    Varsity football will follow an independent schedule for the next two seasons resulting in more local games and less travel to Texas. Casady will continue to follow an approximate nine-game schedule, and although we won't compete for a championship during the next two seasons, aligned competition will be a significant benefit.
  • Will Middle Division athletics benefit with a move to OSSAA?

    Seventh and eighth grades will begin competing in the OSSAA at the same time as the JV and Varsity in the 2023-24 school year. Grades 4-6 will continue to compete in the Catholic Grade School Athletic Association (CGSAA).
  • The SPC allowed our students to have an instant connection to other SPC students. What does it mean for future generations of Cyclones if they don't have the SPC connection?

    While not all Casady students play a varsity sport, neither do all SPC students. Since Casady is the only non-Texas school, we do not have instant name recognition unless students have played a varsity sport against us. SPC student-athletes of today have little interaction between schools except on the field or court while playing. 

    Casady is member of the Independent Schools Association of the Southwest, of which many more schools in Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico are also members. This ISAS membership provides an additional connection for our students.
  • SPC was the best conference when I was at Casady. What has changed?

    There are many factors that have contributed to the change, growth, and evolution in the SPC. This evolution of the SPC  provided Casady an opportunity to evaluate conference affiliation and the benefits to the majority of our community. Through review and analysis, it became clear that Wellness, Development, Academics, and Community were paramount for our student-athlete experience and the Casady Community as a whole. Unfortunately, the SPC of today no longer meets the needs of the majority of our students.

In their words...

"I believe leaving the SPC and joining the OSSAA would be beneficial to Casady athletics for a number of reasons:
  • Improve school spirit by encouraging student body, alumni, friends, and grandparents to attend local competition.
  • Allow working parents to attend games without travel expenses and missed work costs.
  • Retain and attract athletic talent that want to compete for state championships and be recognized by local media.
  • Allow student-athletes to spend more time with family, more time on studies, and more time getting much needed rest and recovery.
  • Gain recognition for and interest in Casady School."
-Casady Family
Casady School is an independent, co-educational, college preparatory, Episcopal day school serving students in pre-k-12. Educating Mind, Body, and Spirit.
Casady School is a PreK-12, independent, college preparatory Episcopal day school committed to deeper-level learning. Casady School welcomes a student body that reflects the diversity of the world around us and therefore does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, nationality, or ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletics, and other school-administered programs generally accorded or made available to students at the School.