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Orange County high schools were advised Monday, July 6 by legal counsel for the Orange County Department of Education to postpone summer athletic programs until further guidelines from health officials.
In a letter from general counsel Jeffrey J. Riel to district superintendents and assistant superintendents, Riel detailed Orange County and California’s reopening efforts and a clarification that “recreational team sports were not permitted under the guidance for day camps”, according to the California Department of Public Health.
The county of Orange County declared a reopening of practices for youth sports on June 15 under the day camp banner.
That’s the same day that Los Alamitos and Tustin became the first public high schools in the county to return to modified conditioning workouts with social distancing and strict safety procedures.
Cypress football held three workouts last week while Saddleback Valley and Irvine districts were scheduled to hold sessions on Monday, July 6.
The Capistrano Unified also was scheduled to start practices Monday but late last week postponed its sessions.
Riel described the reopening process as confusing and advised districts to stop their summer sports “at this time” until more health guidelines are established.
“(The California Department of Public Health) has confirmed that at this time youth sports, including conditioning activities, are not permitted,” Riel wrote. “Once statewide guidance is released, we will collectively work with the local public health officer to consider local community conditions when implementing the statewide guidance.”
The postponement continues the arduous road for high school athletics to resume in California amid the pandemic.
The spring sports season was canceled in mid-March.
There is growing speculation that the football season will be pushed to the second half of the 2020-21 academic school year.
The CIF State is expected to announce on July 20 its plan for high school sports.
Cypress football coach Rick Feldman called Monday’s postponement “disappointing” and expressed his frustration and understanding about the lack of a timetable for a return.
“But you can’t put a timetable on something like this,” he said.