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State by State Return to Play Update: Rhode Island – Wyoming

As states continue to confirm ‘return to play’ plans for the Fall, or in some cases the Spring, we’ve compiled a list of all 50 states and the status of girls high school volleyball in each. If you have information or announcements from your state, you can email jpompeo@prepvolleyball.com. Today we’ve got the last leg of our road trip, Rhode Island through Wyoming. Let’s check in with how some states are handling Fall sports. 

*Updated: 8/10/2020*

Rhode Island – The Rhode Island Interscholastic League (RIIL) released an announcement on July 6, detailing the organization’s plan, in partnership with Governor Gina Raimondo, to allow the beginning of Fall sports during phase three of the state’s reopening roadmap. In phase three, which should be the third week in August, competition and practice will be allowed without a limited group size for low-contact and no-contact sports. The RIIL plans to release a new set of rules and guidelines for Fall sports, including as the season draws closer. 

South Carolina – On July 15, the South Carolina High School League (SCHSL) approved a plan for Fall sports to have a delayed start date of August 17. Volleyball will play only ‘regional’ games with shortened playoffs. 

South Dakota – On July 22, the South Dakota High School Activities Association (SDHSAA) released a document regarding new safety guidelines to go along with its confirmation of an on-time start for Fall sports. 

Tennessee – The Tennesee Secondary School Athletic Association published a release on July 22, outlining return-to-play protocol for all Fall sports, which calls for a lift of the prohibition of contact-sports by August 29. Under the new plan, “students whose school systems are beginning with remote instruction to still be allowed as full participants in all sports.” The association does not yet have an exact start date for competition, maintaining fluidity surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Texas – On July 21, the University Interscholastic League (UIL) announced that Class 6A and 5A athletics would have a delayed start date of September 7. Meanwhile, Class 4A, 3A, 2A, and 1A will maintain an August 3 start date. The Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS) has also pushed back the Fall sports season, now set to start on September 8. 

Utah – The Utah High School Athletic Association (UHSAA) voted on July 9 to proceed with Fall high school sports as regularly scheduled and confirmed via the UHSAA website on July 28. However, UHSAA executive director Rob Cuff confirmed that sports would shut down if schools begin the semester with online-only learning. 

Vermont – Vermont Governor Phil Scott publicly confirmed that there would be Fall high school sports across the state. In an announcement on August 7, the governor stated, “I know how important this is for many young Vermonters and their families, but like so many things during this crisis, fall sports won’t be exactly what we’re accustomed to. I know many have been wondering if there was going to be a season at all. We want to make it clear: There will be. Our goal is to offer a path forward for each of these sports to give our kids some sense of normalcy in these abnormal times.” He also stated that the Vermont Principals’ Association would be releasing guidance for Fall athletics in the coming days. 

Virginia – On Monday, July 27, the Virginia High School League (VHSL) confirmed that there would be no high school sports played this Fall. The executive committee voted 34-1 in favor of the decision to begin Fall sports between December and June. Volleyball would begin February 15, with matches starting March 1. The VHSL has yet to confirm whether the delayed sports season would have a post-season. In the meantime, off-season workouts will be permitted to continue; however, the decision was left to individual school districts as to whether they will be allowed or not. 

Washington – On July 21, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) chose to convert the 2020-2021 sports season into four seasons, beginning with non-contact sports slated to begin in the Fall. Volleyball will begin in early March, ending in Early May, according to the WIAA’s most recent press release.  

West Virginia – After Governor Jim Justice announced the delay of the 2020-2021 school year to September 8, the West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission (WVSSAC) announced that Fall high school sports will begin practices on August 17. Volleyball will begin competition on September 2. 

Wisconsin – The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) announced on July 23 that Fall sports would begin as early as August 17 for what the organization deemed ‘low-risk’ sports, with ‘high-risk’ sports, including girls volleyball, slated to start September 7. 

Wyoming – As of today, the Wyoming High School Activities Association (WHSAA) is slated to begin Fall high school sports on time, with further details to be released in the near future. The WHSAA has seven contingency plans in place, should beginning activities on time no longer be a viable option, and will reconvene on August 3. 

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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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