McFarland HS (soon to be of Disney-fame, along with their state and national accolades), has fallen victim to restructuring by California's CIF Central Section. The section is the only one in California able to restructure the divisions not only based on the traditional school size like the rest of the state (and colleges), but by wins as well. So over the years, the school of 770 has gone from Div 4 to Div 2, and was competing at Div 1...until they were knocked out by three schools 4x their size, missing their first trip to the State meet in 24 years. This would be okay if the school had a say to move up to get better competition, but they've essentially been moved up until they couldn't win anymore, and are now losing out on making it to the CA State XC meet, where they might have gone in Div 2, Div 3 or Div 4. Those kids are being punished for working really hard. For some of those kids, it's the only way to get college coaches to see them run, and that equates to missed opportunities out of rural California.
You shouldn't force a school to move up if they don't feel they're ready, and for ANY school in California, racing at D1 is racing some of the highest caliber teams in the country. They may do well as a team against schools their size and even those a little larger, but at a certain point statistics will take over and they will struggle against large schools.