The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) COVID-19 Task Force met virtually on Thursday, August 27 to review and approve sport modifications for the fall 2020 sports season. The Board of Directors of the MIAA approved these decisions at their August 19 meeting. These recommendations for the upcoming season were developed after months of meetings, discussions, research and collaboration with Massachusetts Governing entities.
The MIAA fall season will officially begin on September 18 starting off with Fall Sports Session One: Boys/Girls Soccer, Fall Gymnastics, Boys/Girls Cross Country, Girls Field Hockey, Girls Volleyball, Swim & Dive, Golf and Dance. Other sports, including football, will be delayed until February, the current plan states.
Positive feedback was given to the MIAA COVID-19 Task Force and committees for their efforts at making this upcoming season possible.
“It’s exciting that student athletes and coaches across the Commonwealth are finally able to prepare for an actual athletic season,” MIAA President and Marshfield Superintendent Jeffrey Granatino stated.“The work that the MIAA COVID-19 Task Force and our individual sports committees put forth will allow for these sports to take place in a fashion that adheres to the safety precautions/modifications that have been recommended by the EAA.”
MIAA Executive Director Bill Gaine also gave some kind remarks on the efforts of the MIAA.
“On behalf of the membership, I enthusiastically advanced pride and gratitude to the MIAA Task Force members, the MIAA Sports Medicine and sport committee representatives for their valuable contributions in providing a blueprint for MIAA student athletes to participate in education athletics this fall season,” Gaine stated. “Stakeholders’ participation, guidance and collaboration with DESE and EEA warrant like appreciation.”
Individual MIAA sport committee representatives established sports modifications in alignment with guidelines from the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA), Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and the MIAA. These guidelines were screened through the MIAA Sports Medicine Committee (SMC), which includes two epidemiologists who work with both the EEA and DESE, over a series of virtual meetings.
The MIAA Task Force unanimously approved all modifications as presented for the Fall Sports season one on the August 27 sub-committee meeting.
The number of cases of COVID-19 are changing each day in the Commonwealth and the Task Force are taking it one day at a time to ensure a safe 2020-2021 season.
“There’s still a great deal of work to do, but the efforts made to date have been amazing and are why we are now able to provide our students with an opportunity to take part in activities that they love and miss dearly,” Granatino said.