East Lansing, Mich. — No one would’ve thought the state of Michigan would shift from phase four of recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic. Last Friday, the MHSAA (Michigan High School Athletic Association) released their Guidance for Opening School Sports. On Tuesday, the association had to act quickly and update their guidelines to schools. Below are the following guidelines that were recently updated by the MHSAA.
1. Member schools may begin summer activities at school facilities as long as both the school and school district has declared school facilities open to students and staff and the academic school year (last day of online instruction/exams) has ended. Under current orders, only outdoor school facilities may be used if both conditions above have been met.
2. Given the Governor’s June 1st order allowing outdoor groups of 100 or fewer with physical distancing, this has moved all outdoor activity to a “modified step 2” in the “MHSAA/NFHS Re-Opening of School Sports” guidance document from May 29. This is modified because competition may not start yet due to the physical distancing requirement of six feet. Only outdoor workouts and practices are allowed at this time following the physical distance guidance and outdoor limits of 100 or fewer if school district facilities are open. Unless proper cleaning and physical distancing is practiced, the use of restrooms and other indoor facilities including training rooms should be avoided.
3. The following four-page document has been modified from the original guidance document as it addresses current conditions as defined by the June 1st Executive Order. It is anticipated that the controlling factor in progressing between the steps is the number of people allowed in groups as set by the Governor, thus the current allowed outdoor activity is a modification of step 2. When indoor facilities open in the future, and if the limit of 10 persons exists, that indoor activity would start with step 1. The MHSAA will continue to communicate on the progression of steps based on future government direction.
4. All MHSAA out-of-season summer coaching regulations continue to apply (e.g. voluntary, not part of team selection, etc.).
“We were excited and encouraged by Governor Whitmer’s announcements Monday,” said Mark Uhl. “The opportunity for outside gatherings of up to 100 allowed us to rework a number of guidelines that we had published Friday as part of the MHSAA/NFHS reopening document. Our schools have been cautiously eager to take this long-awaited first step. We will continue to provide updates in accordance with the Governor’s directives for reopening the state, always prioritizing safety for all involved in school sports programs.”
Below is a link of the update in full.