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Friday hearing to provide update on pandemic learning and high school sports

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BATON ROUGE - Fans of high school football are in anticipation of a Friday morning meeting that will provide more information about how high school sports programs will be handled during 2020-2021. 

High school athletic programs have been hampered by the COVID health crisis, with over 150,000 cases of novel coronavirus in Louisiana, the state remains in Phase 2 of the reopening process.

Despite the pandemic, many feel its time for high school football players and other young athletes to return to the team sports they love.

Prior to the meeting, parents and coaches in Louisiana voiced their concerns regarding a delayed football season, pointing out that other southern states, such as Mississippi, Arkansas, Georgia, Texas, and Alabama, had already begun their football seasons. 

Their push for a return of high school football was echoed by Chief of Investigations for the East Baton Rouge Coroner's Office, Shane Evans, who spoke out regarding the issue Thursday, saying, "I hope they understand, if they cancel football, those kids are still going gather on the weekends." 

Evans, who is a former youth football coach, went on to explain that teens who are actively involved in high school athletic programs are trained to be more disciplined, health-conscious, and most importantly their training keeps them out of trouble. 

>Click here for additional details on Evans' statement

Attorney General Jeff Landry added his voice to those in support of a return of high school football in Louisiana by releasing a letter on Monday, urging LHSAA to turn on its "Friday Night Lights." 

At this time, cross country and swim seasons began this week for the LHSAA, with its volleyball season set to follow Sept. 8 and if the state moves into Phase 3 of the reopening process then football season is expected to start Oct. 8-10.

The House Education Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Ray Garofalo, will host the 9 a.m. meeting in Room 5 of the State Capitol, The Advocate reports. 

The meeting's speakers will include Dr. Cade Brumley, state superintendent of education; Dr. Courtney Phillips, secretary, Louisiana Department of Health; Sandy Holloway, president, State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education; H. "Butch" Browning, Jr., state fire marshal, are also scheduled to provide information.


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