LA Senator asks BESE to suspend all school athletics

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Democratic State Senator Cleo Fields from Baton Rouge asks the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to suspend all sports activities in public schools for the fall semester. This would include athletic activities in grades K through 12.

Fields, who is also the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Education, made the request in a letter he sent to BESE on Monday.

“I am requesting the board to include a suspension of ALL athletic activities for this fall in any rules adopted regarding the reopening of schools for the coming school year. This suspension should include all activities of any kind that would include student in-person participation in a group setting, including conditioning, practice, and team meetings,” Fields said in the letter. 

“Despite the comprehensive guidance issued by the Department of Education and CDC guidelines, there are still instances of public school teams holding football practice and/or related activities. I do not believe that conditioning activities can be conducted safely; much less drills, practice, and games. There is simply too much close proximity involved to safely conduct these activities.”

Fields says the issue of children at risk of contracting the virus through sports is too “critical” to leave to the Louisiana High School Athletic Association to decide.

The board will meet July 14 to discuss safe ways to reopen schools amid the COVID-19 pandemic.