Chesapeake will recommend canceling winter sports

Greg Giesen, The Virginian-Pilot

Chesapeake Public Schools is recommending the cancellation of the winter sports season Monday at its school board meeting.

Chesapeake superintendent Jared Cotton will recommend the school board cancel winter sports. The division plans to contact the Virginia High School League and petition the league to change the calendar and have winter sports later in the school year.

But the league is not changing its schedule, according to VHSL director of communications Mike McCall.

Chesapeake would become the first South Hampton Roads school division, and second in Hampton Roads, to cancel winter sports. Williamsburg-James City County canceled winter sports in November.

Chesapeake’s decision comes a week after Virginia Beach decided it was moving forward with winter sports. So far only the Beach and Bay Rivers districts are planning on having winter sports.

Gloucester, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Suffolk are paused, but expect to make decisions on winter sports this week.

The divisions are facing a time crunch as the VHSL calendar has the region playoffs for winter sports set to begin the first week of February. In addition, fall sports, which is the second season, begins with football practices on Feb. 4. All other fall sports start Feb. 15.

As of Monday, 23 school division and 42 schools in Virginia were not participating in winter sports.