Anne Arundel County Public Schools (AACPS) will resume athletics in a hybrid format when it re-engages with fall sports student-athletes starting Tuesday, February 16. Participants in fall sports will take part in a non-competitive, four-week session that will include skills-based practice sessions and virtual opportunities. These sessions will focus on participation and engagement and may include intrasquad scrimmages.
Following the four-week period for fall sports, AACPS plans to conduct a 14-week competitive spring sports season beginning on March 15 as allowed under the plan put forth by the Maryland Secondary Schools Athletics Association. The spring season will consist of three weeks of practices and tryouts followed by up to seven weeks of competition. That would be followed by additional postseason opportunities.
“This plan is designed to allow for the best possible opportunity for a wholesome spring season that will include AACPS athletic competition for the first time since March of 2020,” Superintendent George Arlotto said. “While we had all hoped to offer competition for student-athletes in all of our sports, that is simply not possible for us at this point. An elongated spring season provides for more time for a student-athlete or team to rejoin a team during the season should they have to be quarantined due to a COVID situation. It also allows us to maximize opportunities for student-athletes prior to AACPS graduations in early June.”
Arlotto said the school system is continuing to examine a similar hybrid resumption for other high school extracurricular activities.
AACPS launched a hybrid athletics program in the fall but shut it down in early November as COVID-19 case rates rose dramatically. The same health and safety protocols will be in place when the program resumes on February 16 as were in place in the fall. Updated information and plans, including drafts of spring schedules, will be available online at the “AACPS Athletics Reopening” page (www.aacps.org/athletics). Winter sports athletics sessions have been held in a virtual format.