The frenzy to play fall sports activities is difficult to know
The BDN Opinion part operates independently and doesn’t set newsroom insurance policies or contribute to reporting or enhancing articles elsewhere within the newspaper or on bangordailynews.com.
The Maine Principals’ Affiliation has failed the check on fall sports activities.
Final week, the affiliation’s Interscholastic Management Committee voted unanimously to permit fall sports activities – together with soccer – this yr.
On Tuesday, Maine’s departments of training and well being and human providers raised considerations with the timetable and requested the MPA to delay the beginning of the autumn sports activities season. A number of points of the MPA’s plan — similar to masks sporting and spectator attendance — conflicted with state mandates, the departments mentioned.
The push to play sports activities doesn’t make any sense to me – as a sports activities fan and the daddy of two highschool college students.
My son begins the ninth grade this yr. He’ll solely be allowed to be in school for 3 hours, two occasions every week. The remainder of the time, he’ll be studying remotely. My daughter is a junior, and he or she’ll inform you that the junior yr is probably the most academically necessary yr of highschool. She will likely be 100% remote-learning when faculty begins in two weeks.
Academics are rightly apprehensive concerning the well being of their college students, concerning the well being of employees in faculties and their very own well being and that of their households.
Faculty methods across the state are more likely to face workforce shortages, together with a dearth of substitute academics.
And as we now have seen with recent events in the Katahdin area, one mistake or unhealthy determination can result in penalties in communities all around the state as COVID-19 spreads from individual to individual, city to city.
I’ll be trustworthy. I like to look at sports activities, together with highschool soccer, regardless that neither of my youngsters play. When COVID-19 compelled most of us into some degree of isolation in March, it was information from the New England Patriots that helped to tether me and different sports activities followers to the before-times.
The one non-COVID information gave the impression to be about Tom Brady (and Gronk) and their determination to reunite and play for that workforce in Florida. I overlook what they name it.
There was the investigation into the “videotaping” incident, the choice to not signal Cam Newton after which the choice to signal Newton for what could possibly be the deal of a century for a former MVP quarterback and game-changing athlete.
It’s arguing concerning the Patriots that helps to maintain me and a few of my pals from faculty with very completely different political opinions linked. It’s a typical language and customary floor when different subjects stoke division.
Sports activities matter in any respect ranges. There are necessary classes about life and being part of a workforce that come from collaborating in highschool sports activities. There are classes in self-discipline and placing others forward of self. There may be, in spite of everything, no “i” in “workforce.”
I would like fall sports activities – all sports activities – to return as a fan, as a father and somebody who acknowledges how sports activities can carry communities collectively.
However permitting close-contact sports activities doesn’t make any sense underneath the present circumstances.
Dr. Dora Anne Mills is the previous head of the Maine Middle for Illness Management and Prevention. We labored collectively through the H1N1 pandemic and a variety of different well being crises throughout my time within the Baldacci administration. There’s merely nobody I belief extra on issues of public well being.
“If Millinocket has taught us something, it’s that this novel virus may be very critical and might unfold terribly rapidly all through a marriage social gathering, a college, a neighborhood and even the state. It’s human nature to at the least attempt to do sports activities, to say we’ll cease if we get an outbreak, however by then it may be too late. You may’t put that genie again within the bottle.”
Already, the super-spreader occasion within the Katahdin area has compelled faculties to vary their plans and the influence has unfold all around the state, severely impacting the York County jail lots of of miles away and a rehabilitation facility greater than 100 miles away.
All of us need issues to return to regular. Each considered one of us. I would like my youngsters again at school and taking part in sports activities.
But when the classroom isn’t secure for full-time instruction, then neither is the locker room or the taking part in area.
The Maine Principals’ Affiliation has known as its play, however they forgot that central lesson of sports activities. With regards to combating the unfold of COVID-19, we’re all on the identical workforce.
David Farmer is a public affairs, political and media marketing consultant in Portland, the place he lives along with his spouse and two kids.