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KSHSAA sticks with Aug. 17 start date for fall sports

Published: Jul. 22, 2020 at 3:40 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 28, 2020 at 4:30 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Update: Tuesday, July 28, 2020 - High school fall sports will begin August 17 in Kansas. The Kansas High School Activities Association (KSHSAA) executive board on Tuesday voted down a proposal, 5-4, that would have moved back the start date.

Now the calendar will proceed as scheduled. The first day of practice is scheduled for August 17. The first football game is scheduled for September 4.

With practices starting as scheduled, area football coaches say the decision that surprised them, but is one they’re happy with. Because of the decision from the KSHSAA, one of the most anticipated high school football games of the season will be on for Week 1: Wichita Northwest versus Bishop Carroll.

Coaches said they’re happy to be back doing what they love.

“Ninety-nine point nine percent of coaches that get into sports in high school do it because they want to be around kids and I’m glad we get that opportunity to be around kids, and I’m glad we get that opportunity to be around kids and our kids get to do what they love to do,” Northwest football coach Steve Martin said.

Coaches said players are willing to do anything they can to carry out the season safely. They said players have proven they’re up to the challenge with extra steps taken during summer workouts when it comes to cleaning, sanitizing, and wearing masks when needed.

Before the decision to start the fall sports season as scheduled, KSHSAA Executive Director Bill Faflick presented the proposal that would have delayed the start of competition for “higher-risk sports,” including gymnastics, volleyball, boys soccer, and football, until September 8. Other delays would have included:

  • Girls Tennis - no earlier than August 21
  • Girls Golf - no earlier than August 21
  • Cross Country - no earlier than September 2
  • Debate - no earlier than September 18
  • Scholars Bowl - no earlier than October 19

A survey filled out by Kansas superintendents showed a third of school districts starting classes on August 17 and August 24. Bigger school districts, including Kansas City, Topeka, Wichita, and several of those surrounding the metro area will start classes after Labor Day, or the week of September 8.

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

The Kansas High School Activities Association (KSHSAA) met Wednesday to discuss the plan for fall sports this during the upcoming school year.

The meeting follows a vote Wednesday morning by the Kansas State Board of Education to reject Gov. Laura Kelly’s decision to delay schools until after Labor Day. The failed vote also turned decision on when to resume classes back over to individual school districts.

KSHSAA’s executive board determined they need more time to gather information from Kansas superintendents before moving forward with the August 17 start date.

Staff will conduct a survey over the next few days to gather that information.

Two major school districts in northeast Kansas - Topeka and Kansas City - have already decided to delay starting classes until after Labor Day.

KSHSAA plans to meet Monday and make a decision on when fall high school sports in Kansas will begin.

Copyright 2020 KWCH. All rights reserved.

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