Athletic directors, coaches react to USD 259 decision

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The USD 259 Board of Education decided Thursday night that grades six through 12 would transition to online learning when school starts.

The decision ultimately means that there will be no fall sports in the Greater Wichita Athletic League (GWAL) for nine weeks.

KSN News reached out to USD 259 Athletic Director J. Means shortly after the decision was made. He told us that he had to get his head around the decision that came down.

Wichita West Athletic Director David Clark is trying to do the same.

“Its uncharted territory and as athletics directors, we need to come up with a plan to help our coaches and student-athletes through this period,” said Clark.

The decision comes just days after fall sports kicked off for the GWAL.

On Thursday, Wichita East head football coach Ene Akpan was on the field, getting his Blue Aces team prepared for the 2020 season. This comes after his team won five games and notched their first winning season since 2012.

Now, Akpan, like coaches at other schools in the district are feeling the impact.

“I understand the board members have a job, but what I want to know is who wants to go tell these kids that everything is over? Everything you work for since April is done, and what’s the alternative what’s the solution?” said Akpan.

One solution, Akpan says would be moving sports like football to the spring. It is something other states are trying out.

Last week, the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) decided to move their high school football season to the spring.

On Friday afternoon, the Catholic Diocese of Wichita told KSN that fall high school sports have not been cancelled for Wichita’s Kapaun Mt. Carmel and Bishop Carroll schools.

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