Hours after Governor J.B. Pritzker instituted new guidelines for youth and high school sports, the IHSA released its schedule for sports in the 2020-21 school year with football, volleyball, and boys soccer moving from fall to spring.
The IHSA new school year will now have four seasons instead of three. Boys and girls golf, girls tennis, boys and girls cross country, and girls swimming and diving will be in the fall. Practices will start August 10. The season will end October 17.
Boys and girls basketball, wrestling, cheerleading, dance, boys and girls bowling, boys swimming and diving, and girls gymnastics will all be winter sports. Practices will start November 16. The season will end February 13.
Football, volleyball, boys soccer, boys gymnastics, boys and girls water polo, and girls badminton will be spring sports in 2021, with practices starting February 15 and the season ending May 1.
Baseball, softball, boys and girls track and field, girls soccer, boys tennis, boys and girls lacrosse, and boys volleyball will be in the summer season, with practices starting May 3 and the season ending June 26.
“This plan, like nearly every aspect of our current lives, remains fluid,” said IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson. “Changes may come, and if they do, we will be agile while putting safety and students first. It was important that we provide a framework today for our student-athletes, coaches, administrators, and officials to begin preparing for the 2020-21 school year.”
Also from the release, the Board verified that IHSA by-laws do not prevent schools who are conducting remote learning from participating in IHSA sports and activities. Participation will remain a local school and district decision, regardless of the learning plan a high school is utilizing.
“I applaud our Board of Directors for choosing a model that allows every student-athlete the opportunity for a modified season,” said Anderson. “Based on our recent conversations, it is our expectation that today’s plan meets all of IDPH’s safety guidelines and will be approved.”