Dear Fords Fans,
The past two months have been challenging and exciting and have seen many changes and adaptations to the athletic program. I remain grateful for your willingness to shift gears to different seasons and practice schedules and our community’s ability to adapt to unprecedented change. The challenges brought about by COVID-19 have disrupted the lives of nearly everyone in our school community, including our student-athletes, coaches, alumni and parents and families who love Fords athletics.
Despite those hardships we have persevered in historic fashion, carrying out the school’s mission of Preparing Boys for Life and returning to in-person schooling from the start of the year. However, throughout that time I have received constant calls urging us to return to interscholastic competition for the sake of the boys. I am happy to report that as of this coming Saturday, we are ready to take that next step in our return plan.
I recognize that there is high interest in Haverford’s plans for return to athletic competition, and with it, much concern about the safety, health, and well-being of our community. In talking with many of our faculty, students, and parents, it’s also clear to me that students learn and grow in different ways and one of those is through the co-curricular opportunities that a Haverford education provides on the athletic fields.
This return has not been a singular effort: we have been working hard on many scenarios with our partners in the Inter-Academic Athletic League and we are ready to share our Return to Play Plan. This page contains all of the details that pertain to our safety protocols and procedures for returning to play.
The Inter-Ac League, along with the Heads of Schools, relied on advice from infectious disease and public health experts, state and CHOP Policylab guidelines, as well as lessons learned from other local, national, and international leagues in making the decision to return. As these are unprecedented times, we will continue to monitor all pertinent information, and we will modify this plan if conditions change and the situation warrants. The safety, health and well-being of our campus community will always be paramount in our decision-making.
The constant chorus that it is important for the student-athletes to get a chance to compete is our main focus in this endeavor. This fall season will look and feel different from the past. That means that all must realize that not everything that normally occurs in a season will occur. It means that some traditions may not happen, usual rhythms and routines may be different, and we all will need to make sacrifices and miss out on experiences for the good of the boys. If we are not willing to accept that fact, we put in jeopardy the main focus of our energy: giving the boys an opportunity to compete.
Lastly, I ask that our spectators please respect and adhere to the policies set forth by the league and those set forth by individual schools that we will visit, who are making the decisions that they feel are best for their school. Anyone who is not willing to adhere to these policies and guidelines will be asked to leave the event and banned from future contests. Each coach will communicate, prior to games, any specific instructions that pertain to the school that we are visiting for competition.
I am looking forward to watching the boys compete in the coming weeks, and to seeing those who are permitted on campus. For those who are not able to attend in person, we will be livestreaming many of the contests. Be sure to check our social media pages (Twitter and Instagram) for up-to-date information on these events.
Director of Athletics