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Students to play sports again July 6

Delaware News Desk
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times

Delaware Interscholastic Athletic Association member schools may begin summer sports July 6, following a regulation approved by the State Board of Education this week.

Based on guidance from state and national officials, the DIAA Board of Directors created an emergency regulation to protect the physical well-being of student athletes and promote healthy adolescent lifestyles during the state of emergency. It was presented June 24 and went into effect July 1.

The board made a separate motion June 24 that DIAA Return to Play Stage 3 would not start until Monday, July 6. Member schools that have approval from their own district or school may begin summer activities then.

The DIAA Return to Play Plan has general guidance for all stages, which are different from Delaware's economic reopening phases. The DIAA Board of Directors will determine the stage member school​s should follow, aligning it with the state’s order and DPH guidance.

The DIAA regulation might include stricter requirements than DPH guidelines. They are in place to protect the health and safety of student-athletes, coaches, staff, officials and spectators with the focus of limiting the spread of coronavirus, the DIAA said in a press release.

Summer activities allowed in this stage include coaching out of season, workouts, conditioning programs and open gym programs. They may be held indoors or outdoors. For indoor open gym programs, groups should be limited in size. All activities are subject to the limitations and requirements for Stage 3 in the emergency regulation, Regulations 1008 and 1009, the DPH’s guidelines and the state's orders.

DIAA will continue to work closely with school administrators, athletic directors, sport committees, officials associations and the DIAA Sports Medicine Advisory Committee in consultation with DPH for recommendations and make adjustments to the DIAA Return to Play Plan for summer activities and sports seasons during the academic year.

Specific details (start dates, safety measures for resuming practice and competition, regular season schedules, and championships) for sports will be discussed during the DIAA Board of Director's July and August meetings. DIAA remains committed to administering sports this Fall, provided it can be done so safely.

DIAA asks that everyone adhere to the health and safety measures outlined in the Return to Play Plan, practice social distancing and wear a mask.

Find link to the approved regulation here: Regulation 1010.