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Southwest Dutchess Daily Voice serves Beacon, East Fishkill, Fishkill, LaGrange, Poughkeepsie, Wappinger & Wappingers Falls

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Sports

COVID-19: Interscholastic Athletics On Hold Until State Gives Go Ahead

While some professional sports teams are slowly ramping up to potentially start playing games in the fall, high school sports will remain on pause in New York due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
While some professional sports teams are slowly ramping up to potentially start playing games in the fall, high school sports will remain on pause in New York due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Photo Credit: File photo

While some professional sports teams are slowly ramping up to potentially start playing games in the fall, high school sports will remain on pause in New York due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The state’s Board of Regents provided interim guidance for in-person instruction at schools during the COVID-19 crisis, though interscholastic athletics were not among the extracurricular activities considered to restart.

Health officials said that they are developing policies regarding extracurricular programs, and which will be allowed. They are considering social distancing options, PPE usage, and how to disinfect and sanitize areas being utilized by students and staff members before and after school.

“However, interscholastic sports are not permitted at the time of publication of this guidance (on Monday, July 13),” the Department of Health said noting that it is waiting for state-issued guidance. “Additional information on athletic activities is forthcoming.”

Robert Zayas, the executive director of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association, said the organization is hopeful of being able to get students on the field come the fall.

The NYSPHSAA has scheduled its next COVID-19 task force meeting for Thursday, July 16. High school practices in the state are initially scheduled to start on Monday, Aug. 24.

“The guidance released today by state officials continues to prohibit interscholastic athletics,” he said. “We are hopeful additional guidance from state officials will allow NYSPHSAA and its 11 Sections to formulate a plan for the 2020-2021 school year in an effort to benefit the 600,000 student-athletes who participate in school-based sports annually.” 

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