WIAA/KingCo Athletics Updates

KingCo Conference Update:

The KingCo Conference recently appealed to the WIAA regarding the order of athletic seasons, when those seasons will start and the length of the seasons. The WIAA has approved KingCo’s appeal. With an interest in protecting spring sports due to their lost season last year, KingCo will offer the following seasons:

March 1 – April 3 (Fall Sports – Boys Golf, Boys Tennis, Cross Country, Football (Feb. 24 start), Girls Soccer, Girls Swim and Dive, Slowpitch Softball, and Volleyball));

April 5 – May 8 (Winter Sports – Boys Basketball, Boys Swim, Competitive Cheer, Competitive Dance, Girls Basketball, Gymnastics (March 29 start), and Wrestling));

May 3 – June 12 (Spring Sports – Badminton, Baseball, Boys Soccer, Fastpitch, Girls Golf, Girls Tennis, and Track).

The KingCo Athletic Directors, in concert with the KingCo Principals and KingCo Board of Directors, are in the process of developing a plan for schedules and agreed upon health and safety measures to be implemented as conditions and regional metrics allow.

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The KingCo Conference has made the determination that while the WIAA has announced Season 1 sports beginning on February 1,  KingCo schools will not be starting our sports seasons on that date. The KingCo Athletic Directors, in concert with the KingCo Principals and the KingCo Board of Directors, are in the process of developing a plan for sport participation opportunities to begin on March 1, 2021, as conditions and regional metrics allow.

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WIAA UPDATES:

WIAA Executive Board Revises Season 1 Sports in Response to State Guidelines
1/6/2021

RENTON, Wash. (Jan. 6, 2021) – The WIAA Executive Board voted to amend its season schedule on Wednesday, moving traditional fall sports to WIAA Season 1 while choosing to review Seasons 2 and 3 at its Jan. 19 meeting.

WIAA Season 1 will span seven weeks in length, beginning with pre-competition practices on Feb. 1 and ending on March 20. The sports scheduled for that season include cross country, football, golf (alternate), slowpitch softball, girls and 1B/2B boys soccer, girls swim and dive, tennis (alternate) and volleyball.

The change comes after Gov. Jay Inslee announced on Tuesday the “Healthy Washington — Roadmap to Recovery” plan which outlined a new set of guidelines and metrics for the resumption of education-based athletics and activities in Washington. Sports will maintain their previously assigned risk levels; however, the level of participation for each activity will vary in Phase 1 or Phase 2.

“The change in guidelines allow all traditional fall sports to be played in Phase 2 while we still do not have a clear pathway to the high risk indoor activities of basketball, competitive cheer and dance, and wrestling” said WIAA Executive Director Mick Hoffman. “With that in mind, moving fall sports to Season 1 will hopefully provide the most opportunities to participate.”

While the Executive Board will provide a uniform season schedule concluding in regional culminating events, it has granted each WIAA league or district around the state the ability to reschedule seasons to best fit their local communities.

WIAA staff will continue to work with the Department of Health to gain more clarity surrounding the guidelines that were issued on Jan. 5.

“We are hoping to receive more details that were not included in the Governor’s announcement on Tuesday, particularly surrounding indoor sports and activities,” Hoffman said. “As we continue to gather more information and evaluate the new metrics, the Board will be able to make better decisions about the remainder of the year.”

In addition to changing the sports scheduled for WIAA Season 1, the Board voted to extend the open coaching period at each school up until the day before the first season begins at that school.

Previous WIAA Updates:

WIAA Covid Rate Tracking:  
http://wiaa.com/covidrates.aspx

Executive Board Alters WIAA Season Schedule
11/18/2020

RENTON, Wash. - The WIAA Executive Board voted Tuesday to amend the current season schedule for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year, opting to delay the start of WIAA Season 2 to February 1 and shorten each WIAA Season to seven weeks in length.

WIAA Season 2, which consists of traditional winter sports, is scheduled to begin with practices on February 1 (January 25 for gymnastics) and end with a Regional culminating event on March 20. WIAA Season 3, which consists of traditional fall sports is now scheduled to begin on March 15 (March 8 for football) and end on May 1. WIAA Season 4, which consists of traditional spring sports, will begin with practices on April 26 and conclude on June 12.

The decision comes in light of surging COVID-19 cases around the state, putting in jeopardy the ability to begin WIAA Season 2 which was scheduled to begin on December 28.

While the Executive Board approved the framework for each WIAA season, flexibility remains at the local level due to the protocols approved at the November 2 meeting. If less than 50 percent of schools in a classification are able to compete in a sport, in accordance with Department of Health Guidelines, the Executive Board will make an adjustment to the scheduled season in order to allow the chance for greater participation.

Due to the delay of WIAA Season 2 the Board voted to approve an extension of the WIAA Open Coaching Window to January 23. The window allows for coaches in all sports to work with student-athletes in the same fashion as the summer coaching window.

The full WIAA Season schedule can be found here.

 

Impact of Four-Week Restrictions on Education-Based Athletics
11/17/2020

 RENTON, Wash. - The latest proclamation from the Governor’s Office on November 15 directed schools to halt all indoor extracurricular activities for the next four weeks. An exception to this policy was made for the use of pools, which will remain accessible even with the new indoor restrictions.

The Governor’s Office will allow outdoor activities with facial coverings required at all times, including during participation in a practice or scrimmage. Low and moderate risk sports may hold intra-squad scrimmages while high risk sports are still limited to pods of six or less.

The complete guidance document has been updated on the WIAA website to reflect these changes and can be found here.