The California Interscholastic Federation released a statement last Friday regarding the status of 2020 Fall Sports and the return to physical activity, training and competition. It reads:
“The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) believes education-based athletics and all co-curricular activities are essential to the physical, mental, and social well-being of students and realizes the impact and challenges that COVID-19 has caused for our member schools and education-based athletics.
“We continue to monitor the directives and guidelines released from the Governor’s Office, the California Department of Education and State/Local County Health Departments and Agencies as these directives and guidelines are followed by our member schools/school districts when they are planning when and how to reopen school this Fall.
“As our member schools begin planning for the reopening of school, the CIF, in collaboration with its 10 Sections, will be determining by July 20 if Fall Sports will continue as currently scheduled or not.
“The CIF is prepared to offer alternative calendars if it is determined by July 20 that Fall Sports may not start as scheduled due to ongoing public health and safety concerns.
“In anticipation of our student-athletes’ return to physical activity, the CIF is providing several resources to assist our member schools and student-athletes while recognizing our obligation to the health and safety of everyone involved.
These new resources outlined generally below are located on the CIF State website (www.cifstate.org):
Return to Physical Activity/Training Guidelines
This document is intended to provide guidance for CIF member schools to consider with their stakeholders in designing return-to-activity protocols in accordance with state and county restrictions. It allows for a coordinated reopening following the initial stay at home orders and may also be used if conditions dictate the need for increased restrictions in the future.
Physical Examination Waiver
In order to address the impact that the COVID-19 virus and school closures have had on students, and in recognition that families may experience delays in obtaining appointments for their student for a Preparticipation Physical Examination, governing boards of school districts and private schools may elect to provide a one-time, temporary waiver of Bylaw 503.G. This waiver allows the student-athlete to participate in athletics for a maximum of 30 calendar days from their school’s first day of practice in that sport. This waiver only applies to CIF sanctioned Fall 2020 sports.
Financial Hardship Waiver
Due to the impact of the COVID-19 virus and the resulting financial impact on many families, a waiver of Bylaw 207 may be granted for a student who transfers to a new school during the first semester of the 2020-2021 school year when there is a demonstrated and verifiable hardship condition because of financial difficulties.
“As we look to the upcoming 2020-2021 school year and sports seasons our main priority remains everyone’s ongoing health and safety in this challenging time.”
The CIF is comprised of 10 sections: Northern, North Coast, Sac-Joaquin, Oakland, San Francisco, Central Coast, Central, L.A. City, Southern and San Diego.
Palisades High is a member of the City Section, comprised of over 150 schools in the Los Angeles area.
“The development of return to competition policies will be disseminated as they become available,” City Section Sports Information Director Dick Dornan said. “These guidelines were modeled after the recent NFHS recommendations and guidelines. A final decision by the CIF State office in Sacramento will be made by July 20 regarding Fall sports.”
After canceling the state basketball championships in March, the CIF decided in early April to cancel the spring 2020 state, regional and section championships.
“In the best interests of our student-athletes, coaches, administrators, fans, and school communities, health and safety are our No. 1 priority,” new City Commissioner Vicky Lagos said. “As difficult a decision as this was, we must look out for the well-being of our student-athletes, coaches and educators. The opportunity for a student-athlete to participate in sports plays a valuable and integral part in their character formation as a teenager and young adult. We’re heartbroken so many of our student-athletes, especially the senior class, will not be able to continue competing in their sport.”
The City’s current athletic calendar lists Monday, July 27 as the date for the first allowable football practice and the date for all other fall sports Monday, Aug. 3. The earliest any games may be played is Friday, Aug. 14. The calendar may be pushed back pending the CIF’s decision on July 20.
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