Head of Athletics accepts new CIF position

Luke Holthouse

As the newly appointed representative of the California Association of Private School Organizations, Head of Athletics Terry Barnum will take his seat on the CIF Federated Council, a group of 70 representatives from all 10 regional sections, as well as from various high schools and agencies around California.
“It’s a big deal because this is one of the leadership boards that determines the governance of high school sports in California,” Barnum said. “High school sports in California are a huge deal and being a part of the council that governs high school sports is an honor.”
The council meets three times a year to discuss statewide rules and regulations for all California sports.
Barnum is one of two CAPSO representatives on the federated council and is the lone voting CAPSO member.
CAPSO, an organization that consists of all private schools in California, is one of eight allied organizations with a seat on the federated council.
Harvard-Westlake belongs to the California Association of Independent Schools, which is a member of CAPSO.
Whenever an issue arises before the council, Barnum confers with the CAPSO constituencies and the CAPSO board before making his vote.
“I vote in what’s the best interests of all private schools in California,” Barnum said. “Usually that’s in Harvard-Westlake’s best interests, but not always necessarily.”
The most recent issue to be voted on was the proposal to remove the words “athletically-motivated transfer” from the CIF rule book and allow students to transfer schools for athletic reasons without sitting out a year.
The legislation was voted down at the fall meeting in San Francisco, though, and athletically motivated transfers are still illegal. The upcoming issues to be discussed at the winter meeting in Ontario, Calif., include changing the tiebreaker rule in football and the statuses of transgender athletes.
Barnum said CAPSO has not yet taken a position on either of these issues, and will meet sometime between now and February to discuss.
Barnum became the CAPSO representative in October after Harvard-Westlake President Tom Hudnut nominated him to represent the school at CAIS, which in turn nominated him to represent them at CAPSO, which then chose him to sit on the state council.
By virtue of sitting on the CIF State Council, Barnum is also a member of the CIF Southern Section Executive Committee for high school athletics.
“It’s good for our school, it’s good for the Southern Section and it’s good for independent schools around California to have someone represented on the state council,” Barnum said. “It’s just a good opportunity to get a perspective from an independent school, from an independent school in Los Angeles and from Harvard-Westlake specifically about the things that are important to us from an athletic and an academic standpoint.”