Louisiana High School Athletic Association Executive Director Eddie Bonine issued a press release to the public Wednesday concerning the status of high school athletics in the state as the new school year approaches.
Here is Bonine’s release:
“As Executive Director for the LHSAA I and my assistant directors have received a number of emails from parents, athletes and concerned citizens asking the LHSAA not to cancel fall sports in 2020.
“I want to thank all of you for reaching out and conveying your concerns and know those concerns are shared by this office and its entire staff. I want to utilize this release to publicly acknowledge we have received your emails and we are listening.
“The LHSAA is an education-based association and a member of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) that represents over 20,000 high schools and over 8 million students.
“It is important as a state, we get our students back into a learning environment in a safe and organized manner.
“The LHSAA has been and will continue to work diligently collaborating with our member school principals, athletic directors, parish board administrations and coaches to appropriately blend sports into the school setting when deemed safe and reasonable. We will adhere to all standards set forth in recently passed legislature in ACT 9 and those adopted by the Board of Elementary Secondary Education for the safe opening of schools.
“The LHSAA is committed to conducting fall sports to the direct benefit of your student athletes however, we will not put schools in conflict or in harm’s way. We have no intention of cancelling fall sports unless schools are closed or the pandemic dictates that it is not safe to play.
“As much as your communications are welcome here they need to also be directed to and heard by our Governor, your legislators, your mayors/parish presidents, your city councilmen and women.
“Your message is warranted and should also be heard by all of those who feel a need to disregard our state and local governmental agencies safety guidelines to help prevent the spread of the virus. Gathering in large groups, not wearing masks, not staying home when symptoms are present, and not taking the appropriate steps to quarantine when symptoms are present will only delay and possibly drastically effect fall sports.
“In closing, I would like to thank everyone for his or her concern. Please be assured that the LHSAA and I are doing everything possible to see that fall sports take place. This can be accomplished with everyone’s cooperation and help.”