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Athletic Update From Area Superintendents

Dear Student/Athletes and Parents:

Throughout the Fall, we have all eagerly awaited decisions from the Virginia High School League (VHSL) and state government regarding the status of high school athletics. We believe that athletics provide a wide range of benefits to students and we all very much would like for circumstances in our region to support the playing of high school sports. Even though hurdles have been cleared regarding VHSL and the governor allowing play, each region and locality must still work with the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) to make decisions based on current public health data related to COVID-19.

You may have seen in the news that several school districts across Virginia and several private schools in our area have decided to cancel athletics. You may have also read that the VDH health department serving our region (Roanoke-Alleghany Health District) has recommended that high school athletic competitions not go on unless public health metrics decrease to the moderate level or lower for our region. In response to these recommendations and, given that we are experiencing a spike in COVID-19 cases, school districts in the Roanoke-Alleghany Health District have developed clear criteria that schools in our districts will use to determine if competitions will occur from week to week. We have adopted this approach to hold out hope that some games can be played, rather than cancelling the entire season.

For your convenience, the criteria that will be used by school districts in the Roanoke-Alleghany Health District to decide if games and competitions will be held each week are described at this link:

The criteria are based on two key metrics (VDH Weekly Transmission Extent and CDC School Metrics dashboard), and on consultation with the Roanoke-Alleghany Health District.

If the play is allowed, all VHSL guidelines will be followed as well as all Governor’s Executive Orders regarding the number of spectators allowed at events. If you have any questions, please contact the athletic director or principal at your school.

Thank you for your understanding and support as we all work together to stem the COVID-19 infection rates in our region.


Sherman Callahan
Acting Superintendent
Alleghany County Public Schools

Dr. Jonathan Russ
Botetourt County Public Schools

Melinda Snead-Johnson
Covington City Public Schools

Jeanette Warwick
Craig County Public Schools

Verletta White
Roanoke City Public Schools

Dr. Ken Nicely
Roanoke County Public Schools

Dr. Alan Seibert
Salem City Public Schools