The Georgia High School Association has announced they are canceling sports for the 2020 spring semester. They have also decided that they will not be granting another year of eligibility to students who are losing their senior year of sports due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Previously school’s were set to go back to regular schedule on April 27th, but Governor Brian Kemp announced last Wednesday that he was signing an executive order to close all K-12 schools for the rest of the school year.
“Given the announcement yesterday by Governor Kemp, it is with a heavy heart that I inform you that all GHSA activities and sports are cancelled for the 2019-2020 school year,” said GHSA director Robin Hines. Hines continued his statement by sending his thoughts to graduating seniors. “I especially want to commend the graduating seniors who have not only missed most of the spring season but prom, senior nights, awards ceremonies, possibly graduation, and spent the last few months away from their friends and classmates. Our seniors have a great deal to be proud of and while this is not the way any of us wanted it to end, I want to thank them for a job well done.”
Hines said that there were multiple requests from parents and students alike for the GHSA to grant student-athletes an extra year of eligibility, but it just isn’t logistically plausible. Kids need to get their lives started and granting them an extra year of eligibility just so they could play ball would essentially set them back a year in the real world. It is a really sad thing for these kids not to be able to play their senior year of high school, but I think the GHSA is doing them a favor by not granting them an extra year of eligibility.
I’m not sure if we as a community can find a way to be happy about the decision, seeing student-athletes unable to write the final chapter for their high school career; However I do believe that we should find some solace in knowing that the decision passed down was one that was not made lightly, and one that helps us take a step in the direction of getting sports and life as we know it back to normal. We have to start thinking about the next steps such as the upcoming football season and fall sports, and I think that now we are able to start doing that since the thought of spring sports being played has been put to bed.
Check out more of Jake West’s Scoring Points by reading last weeks article: Saving Spring Sports. And remember, in sports, points are scored by both sides, so send in your opinions on sports to [email protected] and see them in our next Sunday Edition.