GREENVILLE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) — The South Carolina High School League Appellate Panel Monday morning defeated Greenville County Schools’ appeal to shutdown off-season, in-person workouts statewide, 6-0.
GCS was requesting that if 15 per cent of school districts suspended athletic activity then the rest of the state should follow.
Per a comment from a GCS spokesman Saturday, the district was also “asking the SCHSL to establish rules about practices and game play in the event that a spike in COVID-19 cases forces some districts to suspend athletic activities. We believe the role of the High School League is to ensure equity among players and coaches.”
The SCHSL argued in Monday’s hearing that the fall sports plan, that the Appellate Panel upheld by its vote, ensures safety for all involved and that their plan is fluid to take into account changes in the COVID-19 situation and that all districts should not be impacted by the decisions of others.
Greenville County Schools announced last week that their athletes and coaches can resume off-season, in-person workouts this Monday.
The district’s initial attempt to have a statewide shutdown of in-person workouts was previously voted down, 16-1, by the SCHSL Executive Committee on July 15. The district was unable to get its appeal on the agenda of the subsequent appellate panel hearing two weeks later.
Greenville County Schools initially suspended workouts on June 25, citing increasing COVID-19 cases in the area. A comment at that time by Nance indicated district coaches had followed protocols in workouts and he gave no sense of any cases directly leading to the shutdown. The district also suspended (and subsequently canceled) a reading program for elementary schools students on that day as well.
The Appellate Panel’s Monday agenda also reflected that Lexington School District One withdrew its appeal to flip the fall and spring sports seasons as the SCHSL modified its revised sports plan.