With Colorado governor closing in-class learning through school year, CHSAA officially cancels spring sports season
The following was sent to CHSAA member schools Tuesday morning by Commissioner Rhonda Blanford-Green.
To CHSAA Member Schools:
We have proceeded with cautious optimism, holding on to a thread of hope that the spring season would be able to realistically resume, knowing that the health and safety of our sports communities would dictate our course of action. It was our hope to be able to create the memories because we understood what it meant to our high school communities — especially seniors — statewide.
Around the nation, more than 30 other state associations have made the difficult decision to cancel their spring season. We hoped that Colorado medical and health data would provide reassurances that we could go in a different direction. Unfortunately that will not be the case. The spring 2020 season is cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic which is affecting communities across the world.
Since March, we have continuously sought advice from state leaders, medical professionals, educational administrators and facility managers at the state and local levels to assess the probability of conducting statewide events this spring in a manner that would uphold safety mandates and recommendations.
On Monday, Governor Polis announced a transition to “Safer at Home” guidelines, which included the cancellation of in-person learning for the remainder of the school year. The decisions to cancel the spring season aligns with these new guidelines.
We convened a meeting of the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee on Monday evening. The group came to a consensus, and stated: “It would be impractical and irresponsible for the Association to move forward with a spring season in the next weeks or even the summer months.”
It is with this information — the inability to ensure operations under the protective guidelines, statewide accountability and public safety through all high school events — that the Association has cancelled all performances, festivals, competitions, regular season and culminating CHSAA-sanctioned spring activities and athletics for the remainder of the 2020 season, ending on June 1.
This decision, unlike the many decisions our office makes over the course of a year, has been extremely difficult because we are personally connected as former participants and officials, current parents and grandparents of graduating seniors, as well as educators and members of our high school communities.
The guidelines, as outlined in previous CHSAA spring moratorium communications will be in place until June 1, even if federal and state guidelines are relaxed. The Association will not sanction or conduct events after June 1. Local school districts will determine building usage during this time, and after June 1.
After June 1, all decisions regarding student and coach contact, virtual workouts, virtual tryouts and eighth-grade contact will be made at the local level.
The CHSAA Board of Directors, Sports Medicine Advisory Committee and staff strongly recommend that federal and state guidelines are adhered to after June 1. We continue to maintain that public safety and monitoring of data points must take precedence over the desire to conduct activity and athletic practices, camps, scrimmages or events.
Our hats are off to the many seniors that have shown maturity and resolve as their culminating year of high school has been impacted beyond activities and athletics due to this worldwide COVID-19 pandemic. The Class of 2020 will not be forgotten.
Our fingers are now crossed and our hopes are that the Association will be able to conduct a fall season with some level of normalcy. Our office will be entirely focused on contingency plans for the 2020 fall season and beyond, should they be needed.
We will continue to communicate as state, local and health agencies keep us informed of new public health guidelines.