While we wait out this unprecedented season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, please know that our members’ safety is, and always has been our #1 priority. Never have we had to deal with a situation like this and, quite frankly, we hope that we will never have to deal with something like this again.
As of this writing, many of the stay at home bans are in place through April 30 and some are into May. We have noticed that some gun ranges are starting to reopen on a very limited basis with strict cleaning and no contact rules in place. We are hopeful that this situation will turn itself around sooner rather than later and as a result, we are planning on the National Championship being held July 9-18 at the Cardinal Center in Marengo, Ohio as originally scheduled. Of course, this situation is fluid and we will certainly do the right thing to keep all our athletes’, teams’, parents’ and coaches’ safety our #1 priority.
To be clear, the SASP and SCTP National organizations have not suggested to any state groups to cancel their state championships at this time but postpone and reschedule when restrictions are lifted. For many of our young athletes, 2020 is their last season with us. We want to responsibly and carefully address members’ concerns of prematurely canceling events, which would bring their last season to a disappointing and abrupt end. Additionally, if state matches are canceled, athletes would lose the opportunity to compete for All-State honors. To accommodate any postponements and social restrictions, the SASP/SCTP National organizations have relaxed the “6 practice” requirement for this year as outlined in the SASP and SCTP Official Handbooks. The SCTP has relaxed the “must attend their state shoot” requirement as outlined in the SCTP Handbook.
Due to delays and cancellations related to COVID-19, SSSF is extending the grace period between the time of online course completion and range day attendance. Those completing the online portion of the SSSF Basic Shotgun Coach or SSSF Basic Action Shooting Coach course will now have 12 months to attend the required in-person range day component.
As concerns of the COVID-19 virus evolves, our commitment to our members includes keeping communication clear, transparent, and current. The Scholastic Shooting Sports Foundation is actively monitoring recommendations at the national level and is keeping regular communications with our coordinators and coaches at the state level. At this point in time, we do not anticipate canceling any regional or national matches in the SCTP and SASP programs.
In order to further accommodate our members in areas where conducting practices are currently difficult due to state mandates regarding COVID-19, we will be waiving the rule in each program that states team members must attend a minimum of six (6) team practice sessions to be eligible to shoot in State, Regional, or National Championship events representing that team.
Please refer to your program state advisor for information regarding events held in your local state to be held in the immediate future as we adjust to these uncertain times. As a reminder, our shooting sports are inherently low risk for transmission. Our matches and shoots are always held at outdoor ranges and athlete participation in limited numbers per squad for sake of match flow also lends to avoiding congregation of large amounts of individuals. We recommend referring to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention regarding COVID-19.
As a youth shooting sports organization, the SSSF and its SASP and SCTP programs continually put safety at the forefront of participation and continue to do so in light of current events. Please refer to this document for updates as recommendations from the CDC regarding COVID-19 affect participation in SCTP and SASP events.
CDC resources for COVID-19: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html