At the end of each school year, the Delaware Interscholastic Athletic Association names the recipients of Champions in Sportsmanship which are awarded to schools that have completed an extensive application process judged by the DIAA Sportsmanship Committee.
Both Woodbridge High School and Woodbridge Middle School in Greenwood were honored. Woodbridge High won the award for the ninth time, while Woodbridge Middle was honored for the sixth time.
The statewide competition pits schools against ten standards set by the DIAA, not against one another. Member schools must submit a portfolio at the end of the school year, proving they’ve met the standards. The entire school and its student body must be involved for a school to successfully complete the program.
According to the DIAA, 24 member schools applied for the sportsmanship award with 22 winners.
“They truly embrace the philosophy that sportsmanship is not just something you talk about, but a way of life for all student-athletes and team members that is demonstrated by your behavior and actions,” said DIAA executive director Tommie Neubauer in a press release. “This belief is an essential component of education based athletics.”
Along with Woodbridge High and Woodbridge Middle, the award was given to 16 other schools thst have now been named a Champion in Sportsmanship several times, including Caravel Academy, Caesar Rodney, Charter School of Wilmington, Concord, Conrad School of Science, Glasgow, Lake Forest, McKean, St. Mark’s, Sanford, Smyrna, Sussex Central, Sussex Tech, Tatnall, Tower Hill, and William Penn.
Brandywine, Mt. Pleasant and Middletown were awarded the honor for the first time.
Tech, Central among honorees
Sussex Tech High School (11th time) and Sussex Central (4th time) were named a Champion in Sportsmanship.
The DIAA Champions in Sportsmanship program was founded 21 years ago and more than 20 schools have won the award multiple times, including Sussex Central and Sussex Tech.
“I think DIAA developing the award and this program has helped bring a focus back to the mission of DIAA - education through athletics,” Sussex Tech athletic director Nick Pegelow said. “I think as administrators and coaches, we have to continue to always do more to promote positive leadership, character development and sportsmanship.”