Hello Panther Families,
Campus has been abuzz with activity this week, which is great to see! Coupled with normal “new school year” apprehension and excitement is a unique sense of anticipation. What will this fall be like? How will the day go? Will my hands always smell like sanitizer?? While many of our questions await answers, a number of answers are beginning to take shape. I would like to share this information with you today.
While the Maine Principal’s Association (MPA) has not yet provided official or final guidance on fall athletics, NYA continues to plan for fall activities to keep our students engaged and active. On Tuesday, September 1, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Department of Education (DOE) responded to the MPA recommendations for a return to fall sports. Simply put, the response requested further modifications to the current MPA guidelines and resulted in collaboration between these groups to outline our return to education-based athletics for the fall. In addition to a new set of Community Sport Guidelines released by the state, the MPA has postponed the start of fall activity seasons to Monday, September 14.
Taking these recent communications into careful consideration, and in conjunction with our own return to campus planning, the following decisions have been made related to our NYA fall activities:
Middle and Upper School Fall Activities
- Middle School participation in after-school activities remains a part of our required curriculum and will include offerings in cross country, field hockey, tennis, and soccer. Any student or family requiring an alternate activity should contact me as soon as possible to discuss those options.
- It now appears unlikely that the Cumberland County Conference (CCC) will provide competition schedules among Middle School teams this fall. NYA is preparing for in-house activities and competitions among our own students on a Monday through Thursday schedule.
- Upper School participation in after-school activities remains a part of our required curriculum and will include offerings in cross country, field hockey, golf, soccer, and volleyball. Any student or family requiring an alternate activity should contact me as soon as possible to discuss those options.
- Upper School fall activities will take place under finalized guidance from the MPA and the state of Maine. This may include modifications to training, competition schedules, and length of seasons. Updated information will be shared as it becomes available.
- After Care will not be offered as an after-school activity option this fall. I will contact these students to discuss alternative activity options.
- Middle School fall teams will have mandatory team meetings on Thursday, September 10 (specific information to be shared by coaches)
- Upper School fall teams will have mandatory team meetings during the first week of school (specific information to be shared by coaches)
- Upper School fall team coaches may share virtual, voluntary workouts with team members between September 8-14.
- Upper School fall teams will begin in-person training on Monday, September 14 (specific information to be shared by coaches)
- All Upper School fall activity commitments will continue through Wednesday, October 28. Participation in any potential state tournament play is required and may extend to Saturday, November 7.
- Over the next week, we will be reviewing sport specific guidelines with coaches, outlining locker room use, and finalizing fall sport training/competition schedules. This information will be shared with our community prior to the start of in-person training on Monday, September 14.
- Students may focus on being active on their own! Refer to the Get Moving page for ideas.
- Families must complete the required NYA Student Forms prior to the first day of school: no forms, no school, no sports.
The last few months have reaffirmed the importance of physical activity in our student communities. We remain committed to providing safe, inclusive, and enjoyable after-school activities for our students in order to fully support personal growth and development. Your patience, cooperation, and enthusiasm throughout the process to return to campus – and specifically sports – remains of great importance as we move forward. Stay the course, Panthers!
Director of Athletics
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