Good morning. This is just a quick note to talk about the period between now and August 23 for your on-campus athletics and athletic facilities. We are keenly aware that most of you are in the midst of training, meetings, walk-throughs, planning, and all of the final stages of prepping for the school year in whatever form it will be delivered. We have worked nearly around the clock, as have you, over this spring and summer in preparation for the coming year. We have closely monitored everything in the K-12 educational and interscholastic athletic worlds as we have tried to navigate as safe a path as possible to a return to this vital part of the educational experience.
As you are no doubt aware, our Board of Control, a great many of whom are current or former school administrators, decided to delay the start of high school sports until the beginning of practice on August 24 and the first competition date of September 7. This nearly one month delay was intended to allow laser focus on the start of school while at the same time recognizing the benefits that interscholastic play has on student morale and achievement. I think we all would agree that what we saw last spring was something we want to work to avoid if such can be done in a safe and effective manner. We are also well aware of the threats from many to take their kids somewhere where competition is allowed should we not have competition. The Board of Control will conduct another review on August 20 of where things stand. We are keenly aware that some may participate, some may not. And each will have your reasons for local decision. But know that if you choose to participate, we are here to support your efforts.
Between now and August 23, consider doing the following if you haven’t already done so:
• It is a strong recommendation that basketball and wrestling activity cease until after the start of the school year. Once the school year begins, activity is closely regulated by Bylaw 23. Right now, even one against one play is not permitted and feedback we are receiving is that until they can do more, they will not be disadvantaged by shutting things down.
• A reminder for all is that only the summer dead period (prior to the start of school and prior to the official start of fall practice) is normally under the jurisdiction of the KHSAA as most use of school facilities during the summer break falls to the local Board of Education through the Superintendent per state law and regulation.
• Activity in baseball and softball should be closely monitored at this time. With an extensive summer period (including not having the dead period this year), most baseball and softball activities and programs are preparing to take a break.
• It is a strong recommendation that spring sports activity be shut down totally, at least for now.
• Because cheer and dance occur in late fall and early winter, some allowances should probably exist for those as well, at least in terms of conditioning and training.
• A reminder that fall sports that are continuing to work out or others you permit to be on campus are restricted to Segment 3 work. This involves only limited and necessary sharing of equipment, all work broken into small groups, and all of the restrictions to the original summer order, which was congruent with the Governor’s youth sports order.
I realize that some would wish for a total declaration of shut down of facilities by this office (which does not appear permissible by law or statute at this time since districts own them) and still, others would prefer we stand silent on the issue and open up sports full speed. So certainly unanimity is likely not going to happen. But based on the number of inquiries, these recommendations or advice appear to be in order and are meant to assist your program.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.
“Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are,” Coach John Wooden
Julian Tackett, Commissioner
Primary Sports Event Contact- Boys and Girls State Basketball, Football
Playing Rules Interpreter – Basketball, Football