In a memo distributed Thursday to Tennessee high school and middle school administrators, TSSAA executive director Bernard Childress requested that efforts be redoubled to comply with COVID-19 guidelines established for attendance at athletic events:
“First of all, we want to thank all of our administrators, coaches, and fans in our member schools who strive every day to make sure your athletic community is following the COVID-19 Guidelines approved by the TSSAA Board of Control.
“The purpose of this memo is to remind everyone that all of the guidelines put together by our staff in conjunction with the Governor’s Team must be taken seriously and enforced if we plan to continue having middle and high school sports in our state this school year.
“We are asking every school administrator to review the TSSAA COVID-19 Guidelines and make sure that your school is in compliance at all times. We continue to get pictures and videos of crowds where gymnasiums are too full, individuals are not wearing masks as required, and physical distancing is not taking place. This is only hurting our kids, and each incident lessens the chance of us completing our Winter season and having a Spring season.
“Our entire organization was founded and built on the fact that we care for the future of young people, and we all want to set a positive example by doing things the right way. Now is the time for all of us to step up and do what the guidelines state. We cannot leave it to others and ignore our own if we want to safely navigate the remainder of the winter season and have a successful spring sports season.
“We have come too far to let our guard down now!”