On June 22, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) issued a press release of guidelines for returning to activity for the fall season.
The release included guidelines for each phase for high school fall sports.
“The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) and WIAA Sports Medicine Advisory Committees (SMACs) believe it is essential to the physical and mental well-being of high school students across the nation to return to physical activity and athletic competition,” the release stated.
The release also said, “Although not ideal, the WIAA intends to conduct a regular season and/or championships even if all schools are not able to participate.”
Brett Fancher, QHS athletic director, said that a return to sports, and which sports will be available in the fall at QHS, totally depends on what phase Grant County is in.
“We are not giving up on athletics,” Fancher said. “We are going to do as much as we can to keep kids involved.”
The WIAA release gives a risk calculation for each sport as well as recommended guidelines for practices, competitions and sanitation. Cross country is considered a low risk sport, but the county needs to be in Phase 3 for competition. “I have a lot of confidence that cross country will happen,” Fancher said.
Volleyball and girls soccer are a moderate risk and cannot compete until Phase 4. Football is calculated at high risk and cannot participate in competition until Phase 4.
The new guidelines from the WIAA also include new special equipment for some sports such as a “Splash Shield” for football players’ helmets. The cost of the new equipment in the guidelines, so far appear to be the responsibility of the schools. Three weeks’ worth of the shields for a football team the size of Quincy’s will cost about $7,000, Fancher said.
Fancher said that they will coordinate with the Grant County Health Department for returning to school in the fall and the fate of the fall season sports.
More information will be available once the WIAA Executive Board completes its meeting on July 31.