SASD Athletic Director Michael Montedoro discussed needed changes to the Athletic Attendance Policy during Monday’s school board meeting.
“The governor released new limits on Oct. 6, which established a 20 percent capacity for indoor venues and a 25 percent capacity for outdoor venues,” Montedoro said. “Due to the newly established limits, we would like to look at some changes in our attendance policies moving forward for fall season.”
“In the sport of cross country, each home and visiting athlete were permitted to have two family members attend,” he said. “Each home race will again eliminate spectators from the start and finish lines.”
“For middle school and high school field hockey, we would like to have each home and visiting athlete to have two family members attend each home game,” Montedoro noted.
“For JV and freshman football, those games are played at Memorial Park, and we would like to cap that attendance at 450 for a total, and that will include cheerleaders and their parents, as well,” he said. “The limit using the 25 percent at the park would be 450. We typically don’t get that even with teams included for JV and freshman football games, so that should not be a problem for us.”
“Same thing goes with boys and girls soccer games played at Memorial Park,” Montedoro added. “We would just cap that at 450. For the games played behind the high school, we just ask that we get two family members from home and visiting families for those games.”
“For volleyball with a 20 percent capacity inside, that allows us to be at roughly 200 people inside the gym,” said Montedoro. “So, we would ask to have each home and visiting athlete to have two family members attend the game.”
“For varsity football, with a 450 total, each athlete would be permitted to have two family members, that would include cheerleaders and pep band, but we still would not be allowing visiting spectators because that would put us over our 450 capacity,” he noted.
Director Dr. Michael Lyman asked, “So, we would just send tickets and once the 450th ticket is sold, we would just turn people away at the gate, is that how we’re sort of enforcing that?”
Montedoro noted, “Yes, that’s how we would enforce it, but we don’t envision ever having to. We haven’t had a soccer night or a JV or freshman football night that we would sell 450 tickets. We sell about 350 tickets for those games.”
“For varsity football we would, and that’s why we said only two family members for each athlete, cheerleader and pep band member, and we would not be allowing visiting spectators,” Montedoro added.
Director Erica Burg said, “With the gym at 200 people, I don’t know if we would expect that for volleyball, but maybe for another sport. How spread out is 200 people in the gym?”
“The seating capacity in the gym is 1,000,” said Montedoro. “We would have to include teams, so if we’re looking at two volleyball teams and coaches, we’re probably looking at 75 people right there. So, we’re probably at 125 spectators or less in the thousand-seat gym.”
Director Jim Bard noted there should be some students attending sports.
“I know we’re following the rules, but I’d like to somehow try to get some students in there to try to watch,” he said. “They don’t really get to see each other now with the way school is going. I don’t know how we could go about it and still be under the state regulations, but it would just be nice to try to get some of the student body in there.”
Suppo suggested an idea he wanted to throw out for the board to think about.
“The recommendations that Mike is looking at has the two adult tickets for every athlete,” he said. “One other option would be to limit the two tickets to maybe the parents of the upperclassmen and then maybe that would give you some left over that you could distribute to students.”
Suppo recommended to the board to remove the 450 capacity number and use 25 percent.
“I would like to recommend if the board is so inclined, to make a motion to approve these guidelines that Mr. Montedoro has put before us, except to possibly remove the 450 number and just use the 25 percent,” Suppo said. “The only reason I say that is that if for some reason that number fluctuates a little bit, whether it’s new seating or we get a different number from the authority, then we could accommodate whatever that 25 percent is as opposed to being stuck on 450.”
Lyman agreed with Suppo.
“I like that recommendation and I understand what Mr. Bard is saying,” he noted. “I’m wondering how we would decide which students get to go, though. That would be difficult. Maybe we just sell tickets and whoever gets them first.”
Suppo noted that upperclassmen could probably be offered tickets first.
“If there was more interest or if we just had tickets from just the upperclassmen, then we would have to use some sort of lottery or draw names out of a hat just to make it as fair as possible,” he said.
The board voted unanimously to approve Montedoro’s athletic attendance procedures with the modification of changing the recommendations from the administration to include 25 percent instead of the 450 number for the outdoor athletic facilities.