DEKALB COUNTY - DeKalb County Schools held a virtual town hall meeting Tuesday called ‘Athletics and the impact of COVID 19.”
Newly hired county superintendent Cheryl Watson-Harris said that one of the reasons the county decided to have the event was to be as transparent as possible for the many parents that she said have reached out to her both for and against having sports this fall.
“I hope that again you see that we’re taking your feedback, we’re triangulating all of the information that we have available to us to ultimately make the decision that’s best for our students,” said Watson-Harris.
So far it sounds like that decision is full speed ahead for fall football. The county unveiled plans to use paper water cups during games rather than water bottles and a transportation plan that would limit 10 to 12 athletes per bus when traveling to games.
One other thing that became clear, nothing is guaranteed. In one of DeKalb Athletic Director James Jackson’s answers was a key phrase.
“Yes we do have a plan for that if we have games,” said Jackson.
‘If we have games.’ It makes Friday night lights seem like less of a sure thing, but hearing that doesn’t discourage Cedar Grove head coach Miguel Patrick.
“That wasn’t a surprising statement to me, ‘if we play games.’ I’m just glad we’re at the point where we can almost get to that point. The closer we get, the better I feel about it,” said Patrick.
Patrick’s Saints have brought the Class 3A state title back to DeKalb three of the last four seasons and they will start this season off with a bang. Taking on defending Class 5A champion Buford.
“We’re trying to get ready each and every day. We won’t fight out if we’re ready until September 4th when we kick off. I don’t anticipate that anybody will be as sharp as they normally would be. It’s going to be some rough football in the early parts of the season, but I’d rather have rough football over no football,” said Patrick.
As for if fans will be in the stands for DeKalb County games. The school system said that determination has not been made just yet.