In a surprise announcement during a press conference early this morning, the governor of Pennsylvania dropped a bombshell, recommending a full stop to all scholastic sports activities until Jan 1, 2021.
Over 90k signatures against PIAA pushing back competition.https://www.change.org/p/pennsylvania-interscholastic-athletic-association-dear-piaa-please-do-not-terminate-our-sports-seasons
As the governor has stated on several occasions, often, he's not making the decisions, the virus is. What does this mean for high school hockey? While public high school ice hockey is not PIAA sanctioned, they do still adhere to all scholastic sports policies. If they are shut down, so is high school ice hockey.
It is entirely the governor's recommendation with no outside perspective from PIAA, as the board put it, "we were completely blindsided". The board and the governor's office are currently meeting to discuss and decide on the immediate future of the scholastic sports activities.
A decision is expected before the end of the day.UPDATED 3:58pm 8/6/2020
Full recommendation from the state:
The Pennsylvania Department of Health and Department of Education today jointly recommended that Pre-K–12 school and recreational youth sports
be postponed until at least Jan. 1, 2021, to protect children and teens from COVID-19.
The administration is providing this strong recommendation and not an order or mandate. As with deciding whether students should return to in-person classes, remote learning or a blend of the two this fall, school administrators and locally elected school boards should make decisions on sports.
Highlights of the recommendation to pause youth sports until Jan. 1, 2021:
Applies to team and individual, school and non-school recreational youth sports;
Includes competitions, intramural play and scrimmages;
Continue conditioning, drills and other training activities on an individual basis;
Does not apply to collegiate and professional sports;
Gathering limits remain unchanged – no more than 25 persons may gather indoors and 250 outdoors.
The administration is updating existing sports guidance to reflect this recommendation.
The administration recognizes the importance of getting children back to school, while also protecting the safety and well-being of students and educators. Guidance for schools is available. The guidance represents endorsed best public health practices related to social distancing, face coverings, hand hygiene, and cleaning and disinfecting in school settings. It also outlines how to accommodate individuals with disabilities or chronic conditions, procedures for monitoring symptoms, and responding to confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 in the school community.WebsiteUPDATED 4:18pm 8/6/2020
PIAA releases statement, an announcement will be made tomorrow.