Update on New State Options for Athletics, September 25, 2020

On September 24, 2020, Maryland State Superintendent Dr. Karen Salmon joined Governor Larry Hogan at a press conference where they announced the possible start of fall athletics, beginning October 7.

The state has provided two options for athletic competition that each district may choose from. The first option is the one most recently announced by the State Superintendent and Governor with three full seasons beginning with fall sports practices on October 7 and October 27 being the start of seven weeks of fall competition. Winter sports practices would begin on December 14 with eight weeks of competition and spring sports would begin on March 15 with nine weeks of competition.

The second option is the two-semester option that the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association (MPSSAA) previously announced and approved several weeks ago. This option would begin winter sports on February 1, fall sports on March 15, and spring sports on April 26. Each season would have five weeks of competition with no culminating state tournament. This option aligns to our current instructional schedule with the first semester remaining virtual and a reevaluation for the second semester.

At this point we do not yet have a decision on which option Howard County will choose. Staff is quickly working to understand the ramifications of both options provided by the state and bring guidance to the Board of Education. Additional information may be found on the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association’s website.

We will provide additional information and decisions as we review and evaluate the guidance from the Maryland State Department of Education.

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Here is information from the announcement from Governor Hogan and State Superintendent of Schools about the start of fall sports in Maryland: https://scotteblog.com/2020/09/25/governor-hogan-state-superintendent-of-schools-announce-return-of-fall-sports/

Scott E

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