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State By State Return to Play Update: Missouri Splits Decision, North Carolina Adds Deep Delay

We’ve been doing our best to keep you informed of how each state is handling the Covid-19 pandemic in regards to the Fall volleyball season. Today we’ve got updates from eight states, all with different moves, decisions, recommendations, and clarifications. You can check out our the most recent changes in all 50 states below.

Alabama Through Illinois
Indiana Through Montana
Nebraska Through Pennsylvania
Rhode Island Through Wyoming

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*Updated 8/14/2020 – 1:00pm*

Alaska – The Anchorage school district announced on Thursday, August 13, that Fall sports may begin practice Monday, August 17, with no limitations. The girls’ volleyball season is set to begin September 4. The decision came one day before athletes planned to hold a demonstration at the Anchorage School District building. 

Connecticut – On Thursday, August 13, the Connecticut Department of Health recommended that the Fall volleyball and football seasons be postponed until the Spring. Just one day prior, the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) voted unanimously to move forward with the Fall season as originally planned. The CIAC is now revisiting that decision and looking for guidance on how Fall sports should be administered this season, while athletics have been put on pause until August 24.

Florida – The Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) held a live stream of its board of director’s meeting today, August 14, during which the board voted 11-5 in favor of proceeding with Fall high school sports. Sports will start as previously announced with practices beginning August 24 and matches September 4. Programs will have until September 18 to opt-out of the Fall sports season.

Kentucky – The Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA) will vote on when to begin the Fall sports season, currently scheduled for August 24. 

Massachusetts – On August 14, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs released Fall sports guidelines for the 2020-2021 school year. For volleyball, that means no more than 25 players can be ‘on any playing surface,’ and fans will be limited to one spectator per player. Those spectators must also wear face masks and maintain a six-foot distance at all times. Additionally, the MIAA COVID-19 Task Force is expected to release its recommendation for the athletic season to the executive board next week, which includes a pushed back start date for Fall sports of September 18. 

Missouri – The Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHAA) met on Thursday, August 13, and confirmed a decision to allow traditional Fall sports to compete in a modified Spring season. The reasoning for the optional decision is in case sports seasons are halted after they’ve begun. Those teams that participate in the Fall postseason would not be eligible to compete in the alternate Spring season. Currently, the MSHAA plans to hold state championships for both the traditional and alternate seasons. Individual school districts will have until September 11 to choose whether to participate in the Fall or Spring, which would begin March 12 and end May 1. Missouri is the first state to offer schools the option of choosing a sports season. 

North Carolina – On Wednesday, August 12, the North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) announced that both the girls’ volleyball and cross-country season will be postponed until November, ending in January. The NCHSAA took to twitter, releasing the modified Fall sports calendar, which can be seen below. Meanwhile, South Carolina will still push forward with its Fall sports season, which is set to begin September 24, with the announcement of the delayed season coming just one week ago. However, only the top two teams in each region will qualify for the postseason, with championships spanning from November 4-7. 

Pennsylvania – The Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) is pleading with Governor Tom Wolf to change his recommendation that Fall sports be postponed until January 2021. The governor’s recommendation came just two weeks before the Fall high school sports season is slated to begin during a conference call with the PIAA. The PIAA is scheduled to reconvene on August 21 and is now strongly considering following Wolf’s suggestion, postponing Fall sports. Wolf’s recommendation coincides with many collegiate conferences’ decision to cancel the Fall season, and the NCAA’s decision to cancel Fall championships on Division II and III levels. 

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PrepVolleyball, and Advanced Sports Media, recommend following the guidelines of your local health officials to stop the spread of COVID-19. Please take precautions and practice social distancing whenever possible so we can get back to playing again!

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