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FAQ-Fall Athletics
FAQ-Fall Athletics
Jon Porter
Wednesday, August 12, 2020

RSU 50/Southern Aroostook School





Will there be fall sports (at either High School or Middle School) ?

As of this update, RSU 50 intends to offer interscholastic athletic activity to its student body.

As of right now, the targeted START for all Varsity fall sports offered is: Tuesday Sept. 1, 2020, set forth by the Maine Principals Association (MPA) for schools located in Aroostook County 

The Middle School Soccer start date is: Tuesday Sept. 1st 

If fall sports do not occur in the fall, will they be moved to the spring?

This would be a decision of the Maine Principals Association. As of this update, I do not hold that answer. It would appear that swapping of seasons (spring to fall and vice-versa) will not be occurring at a statewide level.

If fall sports do not occur will there be something for kids after school?

The Southern Aroostook Athletic Department will explore offering “Intramurals” and/or other athletic opportunities internally. 

When will schedules be set?

Schedules are being worked on by league leadership and the Athletic Director. They will be made available as soon as possible. We expect finalized schedules no later than August 27th. All schedules will be subject to change, and not final by any means. We also do not know which school districts will opt out of athletics at this point. 

Who will we be playing against?

Play is being regionalized so that away trips can be (for the most part) within general areas to the communities. A more traditional “Aroostook” league schedule will be adopted for SACS in all fall sports offered. For middle schools, this won’t change much, as the schedule is generally local anyways. 

How many games will there be? 

How many games (continued..)

High School -

Soccer: Maximum of 10 regular season games 

Golf: 4 to 6 regular season “Varsity” matches then individual and team qualifiers. 

Middle School - 

Soccer: Maximum of 10 games 

With a hybrid return to academics, what if my child is not in school on a day there are sports (Practices or games)?

This will need to be worked out once we see what the responsibilities of the students are on the days they are not physically in school with their cohort group. 

What if my family chooses a full “remote learning” plan for my child/children, can they still participate in athletics?

This question needs to be discussed at an administrative level with no final decision as of this update.   

Will spectators be allowed to attend games, if there are fall sports?

This is yet to be determined at any level. The State of Maine released updated guidelines for outdoor gatherings as of June 26, 2020 (linked here). There needs to be more clarity

on some of the aspects of this before a final decision can be made. 

**UPDATE** 200 outdoor capacity for spectators.  

If spectators are not permitted because of the restrictions and guidelines, how will I watch my child participate?

Unsure at this point. We will look at all options. 

Is there enough busing to get kids to games?

We believe there will need to be aspects of bus (school provided transportation) as well as “parent-transportation” in order to get participants to and from away sites and venues. 

If vetted and approved there will be a waiver form for parents to fill out and sign. This would mean students could ride with their parents to away games. This also may release your child to ride with another adult to away games if signed permission is granted by the parent/guardian. 

Does my child need to wear a face covering at athletics?

There will be situations where your child will need to have a face covering on. RSU 50 will be in compliance with mask mandates by the State of Maine. Athletics are CHOICE activities. You have the choice to access the activity under the conditions prescribed or you can choose not to access the activities. You do not have a choice as to which rules to follow and which ones to not follow. 

If masking is required, do athletes need to wear them WHILE participating?

As of this update, I have only seen documentation of this in the sport of Fall Cheerleading in Maine, but this discussion continues to change at the state decision making level constantly. 

Will there be specific entry protocols for accessing games and practices?

You can expect similar entry protocols(home self assessments) that will be required to access school during the day, and what was utilized over the summer workout period. 

What if there is a Covid positive case associated with a member of our school? Our team(s)? An opponent?

The protocols set forth addressing this at the academic level will also be followed in athletics and extra-curriculars. 

How can you ensure or guarantee my child will be safe?

There is no absolute guarantee to this question under any scenario pertaining to participation in athletics. There are inherent risks associated with sport play anyways. Now, we add Covid-19 as a layer of risk associated with participating in athletics in 2020.

Will the rules around eligibility change?

General Academic Eligibility pertaining to participation in athletics at RSU50. This will be assessed as we return and attempt to fit the needs of our students best. Although school was different and certainly caused some hardships in learning, COVID19 did NOT allow students a “free pass” to not participate in spring academics.  

Do we need to register and follow all of the same protocols as before?

NEW sport physicals are required for the following students BEFORE the start of the fall season. If your child has not had a physical within 1 year then you must have one on file and an appointment set for one. Please set up an appointment for a physical ASAP. 

New this year is a Covid-19 assessment/health history questionnaire form that must be filled out prior to fall activities. 

What is the date you expect a decision to be made?

There is no “end date” in sight for a “final decision.” With all aspects of Covid-19, things change, seemingly on a weekly, or even day to day basis. 

*Any specific questions or concerns relating to athletics can be directed to So. Aroostook Athletic Director Cliff Urquhart.  This will be updated as more information becomes available.