In a surprising move made back on Thursday evening May 15th, Riverside Military Academy became the first school in the state to announce that it would be canceling its fall sports seasons in 2020. The all-boys boarding school in Gainesville competes in cross country and football during the fall and sited that the GHSA's ongoing ban of interscholastic athletics has forced their hand in making the decision. Most surprising is the announcement, however, came just one day after GHSA Executive Director Robin Hines spoke in an interview that he was remaining hopeful for sports activities to return in early June despite the potential challenges of doing so.
Here was the letter sent out to parents:
"The Georgia High School Association (GHSA) governs interscholastic athletics (minus JROTC competitions). Currently, GHSA has banned interscholastic athletics indefinitely (with no indication of when that may change) because of the pandemic. Having a safe and healthy fall season requires substantial planning, writing of contracts, and early equipment purchases all of which would be binding even if the season remains banned by GHSA.
Accordingly, fall interscholastic athletics at RMA are canceled for the 2020-21 academic year. We are planning for limited winter and spring sports in anticipation that the ban will ease at a point that provides enough time for us to execute appropriately. However, similar to the fall season, if GHSA continues its ban beyond our winter/spring decision points, those seasons may be canceled as well.
We plan to move forward with a robust schedule of intramural competition which will give cadets at the middle and high school levels the opportunity to participate in sports, though at an intramural level." RMA has been playing varsity football since 1908... The non-football season will be the first for the institution since 1916, which was in the middle of World War I.