Toledo, Ohio (3-22-22) – Catholic High School League (CHSL) was joined today by representatives from Toledo Central Catholic High School, Notre Dame Academy, St. Francis de Sales School, St. John’s Jesuit, and St. Ursula Academy to formally announce the five schools’ acceptance as full members into the Detroit-based league, commencing with the fall sports season of the 2023-24 school year.
The announcement followed months of discussion between the largest Catholic sports league and the five schools, all located within the Diocese of Toledo. The schools each signaled their interest in letters to the CHSL formally requesting membership, and the request was approved by the board of the CHSL.
Beginning in the fall of 2023, student athletes at the Toledo schools will be eligible to compete in CHSL championships in all 30 sports overseen by the league.
Vic Michaels, director of the CHSL
“On behalf of the CHSL and the Archdiocese of Detroit, I am thrilled to welcome these great schools and dedicated student athletes into our league. The decision of our board was unanimous. We expect this change will benefit our existing members, some of which have had to travel very long distances, farther than Toledo, in order to fill their sporting schedules. We’re also glad to give the Toledo schools a new athletic home and grow our community of schools committed to Christ-centered athletics.”
All five Toledo schools were previously members of the Three Rivers Athletic Conference, which is disbanding next year. The schools joining the CHSL include:
• Toledo Central Catholic High School, high school enrollment of 580, co-ed school, operated by the Diocese of Toledo
• Notre Dame Academy, high school enrollment of 535, all-girls school, sponsored by the Sisters of Notre Dame
• St. Francis de Sales School, high school enrollment of 593, all-boys school, sponsored by the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales (Salesians)
• St. John’s Jesuit, high school enrollment of 565, all-boys school, sponsored by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits)
• St. Ursula Academy, high school enrollment of 450, all-girls school, sponsored by the Ursuline Sisters of Toledo
Laura Knaus, interim superintendent (Detroit) and Matt Daniels, senior director of Catholic education (Toledo) said in a joint statement:
“This is a win-win for student-athletes of the Archdiocese of Detroit and Diocese Toledo.With this move, the students in Toledo and all CHLS member schools will have increased opportunities to compete against communities that share a common mission of developing youth to live life as Jesus did, striving to find God in all things – even on the playing field and in victory or defeat.”
The Catholic High School League is the largest Catholic sports league in the U.S. with 27 private high schools located throughout southeast Michigan and expanding into northwest Ohio. The addition of the Toledo schools will bring that total to 32 school communities.
This is the latest in a series of expansions by the CHSL, which includes 21 Catholic high schools within the Archdiocese of Detroit and Fr. Gabriel Richard in Ann Arbor (Diocese of Lansing), as well non-Catholic schools: Greenhills in Ann Arbor, Cranbook Kingswood in Bloomfield Hills, University Liggett in Grosse Pointe Woods, Lutheran North in Macomb, and Frankel Jewish Academy in Bloomfield Hills.
Founded in 1926, the CHSL has a rich history of governing Catholic sports in the Detroit metro and surrounding area. It is affiliated with the Archdiocese of Detroit and governed by a board of directors comprised of principals and athletic directors from member schools.