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Students’ Needs for High School Sports, Performing Arts Drives Decisions to Restart

By Dr. Karissa Niehoff

Executive Director,

National Federation of State High School


As leaders of state high school associations work with government, education and health leaders on a safe return of sports and other activities, some have questioned why those attempts are being made as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. We believe that reasoning differs among the various levels of sport in the United States.

A recent article in a major newspaper suggested that the COVID-19 pandemic had revealed that all levels of sport in the United States are professional, asserting that finances were driving decisions to keep sports afloat. While that may be the case for other levels of sport, that assessment of education-based sports and performing arts in our nation’s high schools is not accurate. That assertion, as it relates to high school sports, was driven by the belief that schools and state associations need to conduct football programs with fans in the stands to survive.

For the full article, see this week’s edition of the Parke County Sentinel.

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