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Sweet Home school board approves high-risk sports this winter

Many parents and students were vocal at a Saturday morning meeting, advocating for the district to allow students to play sports such as hockey and basketball.

AMHERST, N.Y. — The Sweet Home Central School District's Board of Education voted Saturday morning to allow high-risk sports to compete this winter.

Many parents and students were vocal at the 8 a.m. meeting, advocating for the district to allow students to play sports that have been deemed high-risk such as hockey and basketball.

This vote by Sweet Home's Board of Education means that students can begin practicing these types of sports next week. The district was weighing whether to abide by the New York State guidance for sports and recreation released Friday.

The final call was left to each school district.

Earlier this week, the Section VI executive committee announced that it will move wrestling to the spring season, however.

Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, and Niagara County's health departments released a joint statement on Wednesday, strongly recommending that interscholastic, intramural and amateur wrestling teams and leagues in Western New York should cancel or postpone their winter 2021 seasons.

"Our Executive Committee met with representatives from all five counties and chose to follow the pleas of our health officials and the CDC, to pause our wrestling season," Section VI President Brett Banker said in a press release on Thursday, announcing the board's decision.

"We never discussed canceling wrestling completely although that was an option. We know that a move to spring may cause conflicts with athletes and coaches, however, we are thankful we had this alternative," he added.