Contrary to other reports, high school football in the state of Kentucky will not be canceled tomorrow.
Kentucky Interim Education Commissioner Kevin Brown tells KSR that tomorrow’s meeting will cover health concerns over playing this fall, for which the board may pass along recommendations, but they will not cancel or postpone the season. Last night, news broke that the Kentucky Department of Education was holding a special meeting Friday at noon, with a source telling WPSD Sports Director Adam Wells that the KDE was “aiming to overturn the decision to play.” Brown tells KSR that the board’s agenda includes a report from Commissioner Julian Tackett on the status of fall sports, a report and discussion from Dr. Steven Stack, concerns from superintendents, and the possible authorization of a letter from the board to the KHSAA Board of Control voicing concerns with high-contact fall sports.
Last week, Governor Andy Beshear said he will not overturn the KHSAA’s plan for the new high school football calendar, which went into effect on Monday:
- Aug. 24 — Helmet-only practices begin
- Sept. 11 — Regular-season play begins (nine-week regular season)
- Nov. 13 — First round of playoffs (keeping all five rounds)
- Dec. 11-12 — State finals at UK moved ahead one week
Cross country, volleyball, soccer and field hockey will still be able to play 80% of their regular season games by abiding by the following calendar:
- Aug. 24 — Light practice (six hours per week)
- Aug. 31 — Full practice
- Sept. 7 — Full competition begins
At ease, everyone?
UPDATE: Brown released this statement through the Department of Education.
“I want to correct some misinformation that is being spread across social media and news outlets. The Kentucky Board of Education will not be considering canceling sports seasons at its special meeting Aug. 28. There is a narrowly tailored agenda that includes a report from KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett about the status of fall sports, a report and discussion from Department for Public Health Commissioner Steven Stack, concerns from superintendents and possibly authorizing a letter from the board to the KHSAA Board of Control voicing concerns about high-contact fall sports.
“The KHSAA is the designated agent of the KBE and its authority will be respected, yet the board still has a moral obligation to review matters that could affect the health and safety of students. This is why I recommended the meeting take place. To do otherwise would place the KBE members in a position of ignoring their obligation to oversee the ‘management and control of the common schools and all programs operated in these schools.’”