Announcements and Important Events
Riverside Athletes and Parents,
I hope that everyone is staying healthy during this very difficult time. This has certainly been a trying month or so and please know how badly we miss seeing all of our student athletes competing this spring. We are all disappointed for how this school year and spring sports season has ended for everyone, particularly our seniors.
I apologize for the long message, but I’m hoping to address a lot of the frequently asked questions we’ve been receiving these last few weeks. Please understand that we still don’t have the answers to all of your questions, but we will let you know as soon as more information becomes available.
In no particular order, different topics follow:
- STATUS OF SPRING SPORTS: The latest official VHSL statement is included at the end of this message. In short, there will not be any spring post-season championships. Perhaps the VHSL will allow a few weeks of practices or games late in the season in compliance with state and local government permission. Obviously the longer this COVID-19 epidemic continues, the tougher it will be for the VHSL to allow anything.
- SENIOR SCHOLARSHIP: The Riverside Athletic Booster Club is again sponsoring scholarships to senior athletes who are attending college next year. The scholarship application is posted on RiversideRams.Net under “Announcements” and will also soon be posted on the school counseling webpage on Riverside’s school website. The May 1st due date is included on the application.
- SPRING SPORTS SENIOR NIGHTS: In lieu of our traditional spring sports senior nights, Riverside’s spring teams and the athletic department are collecting senior information to prepare senior recognition on our social media platforms. Spring sports seniors, please send the following information to your head varsity coach: Your name, parent/s name/s, college or post-high school plans, other community or Riveside activities. Please send that information to your head coach by April 10, as we’ll begin honoring our spring sports seniors in late April/ early May during the traditional senior night part of our spring season.
- SENIORS PARTICIPATING IN COLLEGE SPORTS: We had planned on a celebration ceremony for all seniors competing in athletics at the next level. In lieu of that, we are gathering information to recognize our seniors competing in college athletics. If you are competing in college sports at any level (DI, III, III, NAIA, JuCo, scholarship, walk-on, etc) next year, please send your college information to Kevin.Weeren@LCPS.org so we can begin preparing this recognition. Please send that information by June 1.
- SPRING SPORTS TEAM PICTURES: Our photography company, Lifetouch, has closed all of their offices nationwide, as they are a non-essential business. They will, however, mail all photographs to your home when their offices re-open.
- SPRING SPORTS SPIRIT WEAR: All spring sports spirit wear has already been distributed or will be delivered very soon to homes from the spirit wear distributors. We hope to have all of that completed in the next week or so.
- SPRING SPORTS ATHLETIC FEE REIMBURSEMENT: LCPS will be reimbursing the $150 athletic fee. We are awaiting the exact process and timeline for the reimbursements to each of you. All of you paid the fee on your credit card, so we expect that fees will be reimbursed to your credit card. With the large number of spring athletes, those reimbursements may take some time. Again, we will communicate the exact process and timeline when it becomes available.
- PICK-UP OF EQUIPMENT/GEAR FROM YOUR ATHLETIC LOCKERS: At this time, no one is permitted in the building to retrieve items from athletic lockers. We’ll let you know if/when that changes.
- UNIFORM RETURN/EQUIPMENT RETURN: The majority of our spring athletes have team uniforms and/or school-issued equipment. Although we cannot collect any of those items now, we will at some point need to collect everything. Information will be sent out later this spring as plans are formulated. Please keep those team uniforms and school equipment secure for future return.
- RIVERSISDE ATHLETIC FIELDS ARE CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC--Per LCPS, the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office, and local/state ordinances—all school athletic facilities remain closed to the public. Specific to Riverside, this includes the grass practice fields, outdoor basketball courts, and obviously the locked facilities—tennis courts, turf practice field, and stadium. We’ve always been glad to have our facilities open to the public throughout the last five years, but these ordinances have obviously been put in place for the safety and health of everyone in the community. We understand that LCPS Safety and Security and the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office have been increasing enforcement of this ordinance. We certainly look forward to the day when we can open and the community can enjoy our facilities again.
Thank you again for your patience and continued support. We will continue to provide information as it becomes available to us. Stay healthy!
Riverside Athletic Director
The March 27 VHSL Statement Follows:
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Below is an Op-Ed from VHSL Executive Director Dr. Billy Haun expressing the VHSL’s thoughts on the current obstacles facing high school athletics and activities. He is asking every person to focus on taking steps now to ensure the best future we can for the well-being of the Commonwealth and our students. He is asking every person in the Commonwealth to be great teammates for “Team Virginia” and to practice the many lessons learned from being on a team and participating in education-based activities.
COVID-19 and Teamwork
On behalf of the Virginia High School League (VHSL), I want to thank you for your leadership and cooperation during this unprecedented health crisis. As we navigate our way through these unchartered times together, we will all need to make sacrifices and changes to our lives and daily schedules to win this battle. There will be many instances where we are going to have to do what we need to do rather than what we want to do.
On Monday, March 23, 2020, Governor Northam made the decision to close schools for the remainder of the year. I am sure this is a decision that was not an easy one, but it was made after much consultation and advice from very knowledgeable health professionals and experienced school leaders. Most importantly, his decision was made to protect and ensure the safety for all citizens of Virginia.
To everyone associated with spring sports and academic programs, especially coaches and players, this situation has created extreme disappointment. Anyone who has ever been associated with being part of a team knows the countless hours of work, sweat, and dedication that have been put into preparing for this season. Over the years, students, coaches, and parents have worked hard and overcome many challenges to get prepared for this season. It is normal that all of you are disappointed and hurting. All of us are hurting too.
Spring Sports and the traditional spring season has been cancelled. On Tuesday, March 24, the VHSL Crisis Management Team decided to delay until May making any decisions related to considering any summer options for spring sports. Nothing can or will be done before then. Your VHSL staff and school leaders are dealing with personal and professional challenges in adapting to social distancing mandates themselves.
With that, I ask every person to put spring sports aside for now and to focus on taking steps now to ensure the best future we can for the well-being of the Commonwealth and our students. Concentrate on being the best teammate you have ever been for another team – Team Virginia. Team Virginia consists of Virginia’s leaders, health and medical providers and every citizen in the Commonwealth. Our team is fighting the battle against COVID-19.
In the sports world, we talk about the many lessons learned from being on a team and participating in education-based activities. Research has proven the value students gain by being a team member, working collaboratively, showing grit, overcoming adversity and being resilient.
Now we all have an opportunity to apply those values to a situation different than competing on a field, court or in a classroom.
Doctors and scientists have declared the only way to defeat the coronavirus is to diligently follow the guidelines as prescribed. The recommendations of the CDC and public health officials will likely continue to evolve as the medical and scientific communities learn more about the best ways to mitigate risks to the most vulnerable members of our community. Your VHSL leadership team will continue to work at formulating the best plan for the future to serve our students and member institutions in the months to come.
Each of us need to fulfill our role and be great teammates to defeat this very dangerous opponent and keep our communities safe. Let’s work together to defeat this opponent and then celebrate the greatest victory of our lives.
The VHSL is committed to putting the health, safety and well-being of our student-athletes and citizens at the fore-front during this unprecedented health-crisis. We truly appreciate your understanding and cooperation.
John W. “Billy” Haun, Ed.D
VHSL Executive Director