GAINESVILLE — Even with Gov. Brian Kemp's plan to begin opening up the state’s businesses again in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak -- as early as this week -- high school sports remains in limbo for now.
The governor’s announcement on Monday will allow businesses like gyms, fitness centers, barbershops, and hair salons to begin reopening on Friday, granted they follow CDC guidelines put into effect to fight the spread of the virus. It made no mention of extracurricular activities, including sports like spring football or summer programs, that school systems would normally engage in during the offseason. Most prep sports conduct summer workouts and attend camps in preparation for the upcoming season.
Hall County Director of Communications and Athletics Stan Lewis said they are still in a holding pattern.
“We’re just waiting like everyone else to see what happens (as far as sports for next year),” Lewis said Tuesday in a phone interview. “There was nothing mentioned in (Governor Kemp’s) plan about sports. We’re just going to have to wait to see what the (Georgia High School Association) does before we can make any plans.”
GHSA Executive Director Robin Hines said this week they are waiting on the state's guidance before they make a decision to allow athletes to return.
"We are discussing contingency plans for whatever information or time frames we are given," Hines said.
Meanwhile, Lewis said the 2020-21 school year has been discussed but nothing specific.
“We have had some conversations about next year but with so many unknowns it’s just hard to really get specific. Our main focus has been on how to close out this school year, liking grading and things like that,” he said.
“I think we would all like to know a little more so that we can start having those conversations about next year and where we are in regards to sports. Right now, like I said, we’re just all waiting to see what happens now that things may begin to open up.”