Both the IAAM and MIAA Executive Committees have been diligently working with Heads of Schools and Athletic Administrators to come up with a winter sports solution with the rising COVID numbers. Both leagues have put out a plan and statement this week and although the leagues are not committed to the same plan, they are similar in nature and will allow our athletes an opportunity to participate. Please read both statements below:
The IAAM Board of Governors met on Monday, December 14, 2020 to examine the viability of a winter season in 2021. In preparation for the meeting, the Board had asked for feedback from the full membership, outlining their thoughts on winter and spring options. There was overwhelming interest in offering “opportunity” for our winter-season athletes, beginning February 1, 2021. In addition, two other elements were apparent, (1) the IAAM membership did not want a deep overlap with winter and spring sports seasons and (2) the IAAM membership wants to do everything possible to ensure a full spring season beginning March 1, 2021.
The official Start Date for the winter season is February 1, 2021 and will run through March 13, 2021. Please note, due to the closure of Prince Georges Sports and Learning Complex, the IAAM will not be able to offer an Indoor Track and Field season but look forward to a robust spring season of Outdoor Track and Field.
The IAAM will lift the Out of Season practice policy and allow winter workouts beginning Monday, January 19, 2021. This opportunity is strictly for workouts as a school. This would not support early scrimmages or contests.
Our goal remains the same for our winter season, as it was for our fall season; to create and promote opportunities for our student-athletes. That said, we are aware of local jurisdiction constraints and restrictions on athletics and gatherings. Further, we will continue to monitor local jurisdiction plans to possibly extend their current restrictions.
The week of January 11, 2021 will be a pivotal one for the IAAM. During the week of January 11, 2021, the IAAM Board will revisit specifics around a February 1, 2021 Winter Start date, as well as securing logistics information regarding interest in league play versus independent scheduling, all the while, acknowledging the importance of health and safety concerns of our Member Schools.
Please know that the IAAM remains committed to supporting opportunities that strengthen the physical, emotional, and social well-being of our student-athletes.
The leadership of the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association has been working diligently to provide an avenue for winter sports participation for the student athletes at our member schools. Our 29 League schools are located in seven different counties and Baltimore City. With our hopes riding on a January 11th start date, the current rise in COVID-19 metrics just is not conducive to that reality. The anticipated potential for a Christmas – New Year’s post-holiday surge in cases has created great concern surrounding the start of the winter sports season in January. The Board of Governors and Executive Committee did consult and discuss the topic and unanimously agreed that it was in the best interest of the MIAA to delay the start of the winter sports season until February 8, 2021. Pandemic conditions will be re-assessed prior to that date to evaluate the level of confidence by the league and its member schools that winter “indoor” sports can be offered in a manner safe for student athlete participation. With a start date of February 8th the winter season will need to overlap with spring sports for several weeks. This has been discussed with and supported by the athletic administrators at our member schools.
The spring sport season is projected to begin on March 1st and will offer opportunity for a full schedule of league contests to be played, barring additional COVID-19 concerns at that time.
Hopes remain high that by February our member schools will be able to see classrooms once again place students in seats and athletic facilities once again permit competitions to take place.
Please contact Athletic Director, Mr. Phil Gilotte
, with any questions or concerns.