Dear EDS Parents and Students in Grades 5-8,
The Athletic Department is gearing up for the 2020 – 2021 school year and getting all of our ducks in a row before we unleash the Panthers on the league. I am proud to say that we are the inaugural Director’s Cup Champions and are ready to do everything possible to defend this title.
The AAMSL Athletic Directors voted unanimously to delay the start of Fall league events/competitions until after September 7. This change is due to the current risk conditions the Augusta area is experiencing during the pandemic. The Athletic Directors will reevaluate the area’s pandemic conditions and make any necessary changes to the schedules as needed.
EDS Fall athletics will begin Monday, August 17. We will not hold practice the first week of school August 11 through 14.
This letter is jam-packed with important updates and reminders, so please take a moment to continue reading. Due to the current pandemic, we will be following the CDC and National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) guidelines for the health and safety of our students, coaches and visitors. As these guidelines are updated, so will our procedures, and our team will communicate such changes as necessary. Below are a few of the procedures that will begin immediately:
- Masks will be mandatory – at all practices and games for both fans and athletes at all home and away venues.
- Athletes must have their own water bottles for practice and games.
- Social distancing will be required for all fans at both practices and games at all home and away venues.
- Athletes and coaches will also utilize social distancing at both practices and games and the coaches will discuss this with their teams.
- We will not play any non-league schools for the fall season and will reevaluate when scheduling for the winter and spring seasons.
- Transportation changes – due to the limited number of seats available on the EDS buses due to social distancing guidelines, we are asking for any parent who can transport his/her own child to and from practices and games. If you are able to do this, please contact me and your coach via email.
In addition, the Athletic program will continue to participate in the GISA Interscholastic Clay Target Shooting Championships. The season length is from August to November. Student-Athletes will be able to duel participate on the shooting team and any other fall and or winter team. See below for more team information.
1) Athletic Department Orientation and Team meetings:
The EDS Athletic Department hosts two meetings at the start of school: Orientation and Season Team Meetings.
The Orientation will be a recorded message from the Athletic Director, Mr. Jaye Cohen, and will provide a basic overview of the EDS athletic program. We encourage all new families to Middle School or anyone wanting a refresher on how the program is structured. The recordings will be emailed out later this week to Middle School families.
The Fall Season Team Meetings will be a blend of both a recorded message from the Athletic Director and a zoom meeting for each team. The zoom meetings will be no longer than 30 minutes each which will allow for families and players to attend more than one team meeting.
The schedule for zoom meetings can be found below and a link will be provided next week.
On Monday, August 10:
- 6:00pm – Football
- 6:30pm – Cheerleading
- 7:00pm – Volleyball
- 7:30pm – Clay Target Shooting Team
On Tuesday, August 11:
- 6:00pm – Cross Country
- 6:30pm – Tennis
- 7:00pm – Golf
2) Health Forms: All athletes must have all health forms completed and turned into the Front Office by the first day of school. The required forms can only be accessed through the parent portal.
- 5th-8th Physician Health Form
- Immunization Form for Rising 7th graders
- 5th-8th Parent Concussion Acknowledgement Form
3) Game Schedules: The game schedules and driving directions to away games can be found on the EDS Athletics website at www.edspanthers.com.
4) Contact Information: If you need to reach me, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call my direct line at 706-261-0111. As always, my door is open to all visitors – with protocols in place to reduce any exposure of COVID. If you would like to discuss any ideas about the athletic program, please contact me to schedule a meeting.
5) Fifth Grade Participation
Fifth graders can try out for any middle school team. However, safety will be considered in the team tryouts, so physical size will be part of the player evaluation, along with skill level. In football, for example, 5th graders who try out will participate fully in practices but will compete only in occasional JV or “5th quarter” games, unless we are confident that they have the physical size and skills necessary to safely compete against eighth-graders.
6) Fall Team Information
Click Here for information on each fall team, including contact information for the head coaches. Please add these emails to any contact lists you may already have for future outreach.
Thank you all for your continued support of the EDS athletic program. We are excited to get back to school and start a great season! Go Panthers!
Jaye Cohen, CAA