Some New Jersey and Pennsylvania high school teams will be permitted to resume practices or games as early as next week as governors in those states announced changes to COVID-19 protocols.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced indoor sports can resume on January 2, 2021, but interstate sports remain banned, and almost all games will have to be played without spectators because the state's gathering limit of 10 persons includes participants, coaches, and referees.
The NJSIAA, which overseas high school sports in the Garden State, previously modified its high school schedule, with ice hockey launching game on January 4, 2021, although its unclear if the pause will affect them going forward.
Basketball, bowling, and fencing are set to start practice on January 11, 2021. Swimming and track and field begin on February 1, 2021 and gymnastics, volleyball, and wrestling on March 1, 2021.
New Jersey announced a positivity rate of 15.19% on December 25, with 3,700 people currently hospitalized with COVID-19. Of those, 700 people are in intensive care.
In Pennsylvania, Governor Tom Wolf said that the three-week pause on all youth sports, including high schools, will come to an end on January 4, 2021.
Some schools had already begun practice before the December 10 announcement so those who had already practiced six times or more will need at least four days of practice, meaning competition could not begin before at least January 8. PIAA schools are required to have 10 practice days before competition.
Delaware's DIAA Board of Directors is set to hold a special meeting on Thursday, January 7, 2021, as Delaware's competition pause is set to expire on January 11, the same day Governor John Carney announced earlier this month that he felt schools should return to hybrid instruction.
Delaware high schools have been permitted to continue winter practices during the competition ban.
An agenda for the DIAA meeting is expected to be announced on December 31, seven days before the board meets virtually.
Information from NBC10 was used in this article