I work as a sports official (freelance vendor) for a variety of local schools and associations, including RUSD and the Metro Classic Conference, in which both St. Catherine’s and Lutheran High compete. While some of my brethren have elected to sit out the fall/winter sports seasons, I have chosen to participate in high-risk volleyball this fall.
The Journal Times editorial of Sept. 30 makes salient points on the COVID-19 dangers of busing and travel issues. Obviously, in these troubled times, eliminating all risk is not possible. So it becomes an issue of managing the risk — lowering it to a level of acceptable. And perhaps as a further indicator of these fractious times, everyone seems to have a different take on acceptable risk. A lot of it is location-based — urban vs. rural. (And too much is political-based, sadly.)
While your editorial pointed out many of the minuses our local schools are dealing with, it failed to mention the major plus; neither Lutheran nor St. Catherine’s are bringing in out-of-town teams/spectators — a huge chunk of potential-contamination. Whether this consideration evens out with the alternatives these schools (and Racine’s safety initiatives) are employing, we are, as always lately, in uncharted waters.
We should not be swayed by the reopening of professional sports. Those adult millionaires seem fully able to navigate these rocky conditions — to manage their risk. Under-18 student-athletes are dependent on school coaches and administrators, as well as state and local officials, to create a safe playing environment.