Game plan approved for high school sports in Anne Arundel Co.

The return of high school sports is on the horizon in Anne Arundel County, Maryland.

The Anne Arundel County Board of Education unanimously adopted a two-semester high school sports plan on Tuesday night.

Out-of-season practices will start Monday, Oct. 19, with three four-week long practice sessions. Three five-week long competitive seasons would begin Feb. 1 and last through June 19, according to an Anne Arundel County Public Schools news release.

Winter sports would go first, followed by fall and then spring sports.

Under the plan, athletes in fall sports would practice from Oct. 19 through Nov. 14; spring sports from Nov. 18 through Dec. 19; and winter sports from Jan. 4 through Jan. 30.

There would be “no traditional tryouts or cuts, thus opening opportunities to more students to participate,” the school system said.

The plan calls for teams to hold two in-person sessions and one virtual session per week, per sports. Student-athletes would work in groups of 50 and be kept together,” the school system said, and forms would be used for “attendance and potential contact tracing.”

Safety and sanitization plans will also be in place for all gatherings.

The option was chosen over another that would have brought about fall sports in September.

Education officials “strongly encouraged the allowance of interscholastic high school scrimmages,” which were not part of the plan presented by Anne Arundel County Public Schools Superintendent George Arlotto and Coordinator of Athletics Clayton Culp, according to the school district.

If the early 2021 competition date is moved to this December, as some Maryland school system heads want, Arlotto and Culp said that could be accommodated.

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