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Catholic elementary and middle schools suspend fall sports competitions

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BATON ROUGE - The Catholic Schools under the Diocese of Baton Rouge announced on Friday morning all sports competitions are suspended for the fall for elementary and middle schools.

The cancellation affects about 25 Catholic schools through the eighth grade.

According to the Catholic Schools Office, "Athletic competition at diocesan high schools is not affected by this decision. High school athletic programs are governed by the Louisiana High School Athletic Association (LHSAA)."

The office issued the following statement in announcing its decision:

"Catholic elementary and middle schools in the Diocese of Baton Rouge reopened in August with appropriate procedures in place to mitigate the chance of COVID-19 transmission on campus.  The health and safety of students and staff were of primary importance in the decision to reopen school buildings in service to students and families.  With that focus, it has been determined that extra-curricular athletics will not be held during the first semester of this school year.  With time, it is hoped that it will be possible to consider resuming sports programs in elementary and middle schools during the spring semester.  These are extraordinary times that have caused us to take this extraordinary action.  School leaders are grateful for the support and cooperation of all stakeholders as decisions are made to ensure safety of all. We share the disappointment of our students, their families, our faculties and staffs, and the communities in which our athletic teams have participated for decades. We all pray for a safe environment in the spring that will permit a return to spirited sports competition."

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