Scots Moving On Up

Sports powerhouse Highland Park High School narrowly makes grade for new 6A

Sports powerhouse Highland Park High narrowly makes grade for new 6A

Highland Park Scots Football
Highland Park football has been dominant in North Texas 4A play. Highland Park Scots Radio/Facebook
Highland Park High School
Highland Park High School's foray into 6A will include UIL competition in athletics, academics and fine arts. Photo courtesy Town of Highland Park
Highland Park Scots Football
Highland Park High School

In a school of thousands, just seven students tipped the scales for Highland Park High School to be classified as a 6A program in UIL competition. The change will take effect beginning in the 2014-2015 school year. The 6A classification is replacing 5A in UIL nomenclature and is the largest classification of Texas high schools.

Tiptoeing the enrollment line, Highland Park has dominated 4A athletics for decades, consistently making the playoffs and often winning state championships in football, golf, soccer, swimming and tennis.

But thanks to seven students, Highland Park has crossed the 6A threshold of 2,100 by a hair. That puts the Scots in the same league as other Dallas-area athletic powerhouses, including Allen, Plano and Southlake Carroll.

Of course, there's always the possibility that enrollment will go back down in a few years and allow the Scots to rejoin a lower classification. The tight-knit Park Cities community has resisted the temptation to build a second high school, though the UIL numbers could make the prospect more appealing than ever.

Will 6A spell an end to Highland Park's era as a dominant force in Dallas sports? Don't count on it. "The Scots are always competitive," superintendent Dawson Orr said in a statement. "We look forward to the challenge."