Aug 5, 2020 - Sports
The return of high school sports hangs in the balance
As local governments go to war over whether high schools can open, the fate of the fall sports season hangs in the balance.
The state of play: The National Federation of State High School Associations has offered a 16-page guide to help states resume athletics, but with so many organizations and school districts involved, there has been little uniformity.
- The majority of states have announced delays or postponements for some or all fall sports, while 15 are still planning to hold normal fall sports seasons.
Why it matters: Whether seasons start as scheduled, get delayed or move to 2021, high school athletes will be impacted in myriad ways.
- Exercise: Physical activity levels of high school athletes have declined 50% since May, according to a recent University of Wisconsin study.
- Mental health: That same study suggests two-thirds of high school athletes are experiencing depression and anxiety due to canceled seasons.
- Recruiting: A reshuffled high school sports schedule could negatively impact recruiting, and multi-sport athletes will face difficult decisions if seasons overlap (as is the case in California).
Go deeper: What a school day looks like in a pandemic