We are going to be checking with area schools now to see if the WIAA vax-testing mandate has an effect on area athletic participation.

About ten days ago, the WIAA (Washington Interscholastic Activities Association) put out a mandate, by way of the Department of Health and state, that all winter sport athletes have to either show vaccination proof or be willing to be tested twice weekly for COVID during their seasons. Applies to middle and high schools.

The areas we believe will have the most impact will be in middle schools.

The WIAA told us via email this was NOT their idea, but a state mandate. It affects boys-girls basketball, wrestling, and cheerleading.

WHAT ARE POLL RESULTS?

In our poll, we asked four questions. And here are the 'final' results (after one week):

The question: Will WIAA Mandates Affect (your) Child Playing Sports?

  • They will not participate:  47%
  •  No vaccination but testing OK-child will play 30%
  •  Child vaccinated already no issues 13%
  •  Will seek sports outside of school 8%

These percentages do have some decimal points (47.something etc) but it gives you an idea of how parents-athletes are reacting to this.  The areas we believe will have the most impact will be in middle schools.

That's where you have a lot of 'fringe' or first-time competitors. They're kids who are fairly athletic but have not tried a sport before and want to give one a go.  Many parents and kids will look at these mandates and decide it's not worth the hassle. They're not as invested in athletics as some families are.

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Middle school sports were already fading somewhat prior to COVID, and all the mandates and restrictions and roadblocks handed down by the state (NOT your local schools) have decimated participation numbers already. We've seen if first hand at Highlands MS in Kennewick. Depending upon the sport, some are really hurting.

 

CHECK IT OUT: 100 sports records and the stories behind them