72% of Texas HS marching bands received a 1st division this year at Region marching. Almost 3/4 of them. There are so many people in this state who equate "1st division" with "1st place" that they have no frame of reference whatsoever when the trophy mill mentality is finally set aside at the Area level and people start taking you more seriously. On that merit, Area/State are truly a much *more* educational experience because they serve as a reality check on how real life actually works.
My guess is you teach at a school that has only recently pawed and clawed its way towards getting a first division at Region Marching, or has had some years of 2s and some years of 1s. So this year you got a 1. This achievement was met with tremendous fanfare at your campus...only to find yourselves getting slaughtered at the Area contest the following week. Which is to be expected. Schools that barely qualified for Area usually end up in the bottom half.
So instead of coming to terms with reality and figuring out how to adjust course to improve, you've resorted to criticizing the system instead. "They need to understand our journey to give us the reward we deserve!".
But society does not care about your journey. It only cares if you can impress it. That you're worth its time. NASA doesn't care that you took kids who could only add and subtract and through storm and snow managed to teach them long division. They're still going to hire the kids who can do Integral Calculus over yours.