MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Student-athletes, parents, and coaches are eagerly awaiting an announcement from the PIAA.
The big question is if the association will listen to the Governor and hold off on sports until next year, or move forward with its own plans.
Members of the association are meeting Friday at 3 p.m. and will be discussing the “starting of fall sports.”
The decision is huge for Pennsylvania families; the PIAA says it has 350,000 student-athletes.
At the end of July, the PIAA gave schools the go-ahead for fall sports and athletic departments started planning how to move forward safely.
That was put to a halt in early August, when Governor Tom Wolf said, during reporter questions at a press conference, he strongly recommends sports don’t start until January of 2021.
PIAA representatives said they were shocked by the statement, and would take some time to decide what to do.
Last week, the association talked with the Governor’s staff about sports and health safety strategies and local liability protections.
The PIAA said Wolf has continually put the pressure back on others, calling this a local schools’ decision.
It has spent this past week talking with experts about what to do next.
Meanwhile, Pennsylvania families spent Thursday rallying in support for the association.
“Our son is a senior this year and he’s been working a lot of years to have the opportunity to play and obviously we’ve been following all of the safety protocols,” said Dave Clark, a Manheim Township football parent. “The kids have been practicing.”
“I’m here so I can run and so my teammates can run and my teammates can play and that everyone here can enjoy their sport and live their life to the fullest,” said Gretal Shank, a Carlisle cross country senior.
In a recent statement, PIAA representatives said they were concerned the Wolf administration is not using specific Pennsylvania sports data to make this recommendation.
The Governor has stressed that the way to keep vulnerable Pennsylvanians safe from the deadly coronavirus is to keep people socially distanced.