Serving Kentucky's Schools and Student Athletes Since 1917

03/08/20- Statement on Ongoing KHSAA Activities and the COVID-19 (Corona) Virus

March 8, 2020 2019-2020 News Releases


The Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA) is aware and continues to monitor the issues with COVID-19 (Coronavirus). We are keenly aware of the recently declared emergency status and the primary purpose for which those declarations were made, to enable and expedite federal assistance with state and local efforts. We will review any new developments and listen to medical experts as they advise not only the KHSAA but our Commonwealth and country on alternative next steps. We will work with our member schools and our host facilities to take every precaution to ensure a healthy and safe environment for everyone involved.

The last 96 hours have been particularly intense and nearly 24/7 for myself as Commissioner as well as others in communication with our office, with a continual review of information and advisories. We will continue to rely heavily on the information from the CDC and state and local health representatives while monitoring all available data. We also have paid special attention to information from the NCAA, which also has several special events in the next few weeks and a superb panel of medical experts advising them on all of their necessary steps.

As of this point, there are no plans to alter the arrangements or schedule for either State Basketball Tournament. We continue to work closely with the staff at Lexington Center and are one-hundred percent certain that all necessary steps are being taken to control what we and the facility can control.

Probably the best summary of the current position of the Association would be to echo the remarks made by Dr. Frank Hainline, the NCAA chief medical officer, and senior vice president in his statement on behalf of their medical panel on Friday, March 6 when he stated:
“The panel members believe that we need to better understand COVID-19 while continuing to work with local, state and federal health authorities such as the CDC,” read the statement. “The key is for all stakeholders and athletes to practice risk mitigation at all events. At present, the panel is not recommending cancellation or public spacing of athletic and related events scheduled to occur in public spaces across the United States.”

We as an organization cannot control individual decisions. We realize that some will desire not to attend, just as they might desire not to attend for other reasons. We also know that things can change and we will continually monitor all reliable, professional resources and keep you informed.

  1. Without question, the three most important suggested steps remain the same:
    Hand-washing should be emphasized, now more than ever.
  2. Individuals who are sick should not plan on attending, and
  3. Those with particularly vulnerable health conditions, especially the elderly, should be encouraged to thoroughly evaluate their decisions to attend.

We will publicly update everyone involved with any developments regarding coronavirus which could impact the upcoming tournaments. But please know that all involved are, as always, committed to ensuring our events are as safe and seamless as possible.

Commissioner Julian Tackett, KHSAA


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