Section III to hold vote among school districts to determine fate of fall sports season

The 105 school districts of Section III will vote to determine whether or not fall sports will begin as intended on Sept. 21 or if sports will be pushed back until after Jan. 1 as schools continue plans to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Posted: Sep 8, 2020 7:29 PM
Updated: Sep 8, 2020 11:46 PM

SYRACUSE, N.Y. - Low and moderate-risk fall sports are set to begin competition on Sept. 21 across New York State, according to guidance from the Governor and NYS Department of Health, but there's a chance schools in Section III locally won't be starting at that time.

There is a section-wide vote being cast among the 105 school districts within Section III to help determine the fate of fall interscholastic sports, NEWSChannel 2 has confirmed, Tuesday.

According to Section III Executive Director John Rathbun, ballots have been dispersed to each school district and must be returned by 4 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 10, along with signatures from the districts' Superintendent, Athletic Director and High School Principal.

The options are to:

  1. Hold the fall season as intended with low-risk and moderate-risk sports beginning full competition on Sept. 21; high-risk sports can begin to practice, but not play games initially
  2. Hold the fall season for low-risk and moderate-risk sports as intended beginning on Sept. 21, but move high risk sports until after Jan. 1, 2021
  3. Push all interscholastic sports back until after Jan. 1, 2021

The Section III Executive Committee will meet to review the results of the ballots and make a final decision regarding the status of fall sports on Friday, Sept. 11.

Also on Thursday, league presidents in Section III will meet with NYSPHSAA Executive Director, Dr. Robert Zayas, via Zoom to discuss questions regarding the NYSPHSAA's Return to Interscholastic Athletics guidance document, that was released on Sept. 4.

Previously, the NYSPHSAA has established contingency plans for interscholastic sports seasons should they need to condense them to the 2021 portion of the academic year. It is not clear at this time if a vote for a delay in Section III would involve that plan or not.

Stay with NEWSChannel 2 for more updates on this developing story.

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