Class-action lawsuit against IHSA over pandemic restrictions expected this week

Class-action lawsuit against IHSA over pandemic restrictions expected this week
High school athletes hold a rally downtown Sept. 19. Photo credit Mike Krauser/WBBM

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) — Some students and their parents have been rallying for weeks for a return to high school sports –- now they plan to take their fight to court.

Dave Ruggles, whose son is a junior at Wheaton Warrenville South High School, is among almost two dozen parents taking the Illinois High School Association to court.

The class-action lawsuit, expected to be filed in DuPage County this week, accuses the organization of violating its bylaws.

Elizabeth Barajas, a senior at Solorio Academy in Gage Park, has argued that volleyball isn’t a contact sport so she and her teammates should be allowed to play this fall.

She said sports motivates some students to perform better in school and pushing back the season unfairly hurts students who can’t afford to stay in shape by playing for private club teams.

Ruggles said he wants his junior son to get back to in-person learning quickly and hopes the lawsuit will be a first step towards that.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker reiterated last week that he would not allow the resumption this fall of football, girls volleyball and boys soccer because they’re deemed higher risk for the spread of COVID-19.