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COVID-19 Response

Kennewick Grid Kids is committed to providing accurate and timely information to our stakeholders as transparently as possible. Our COVID-19 Response Page contains information on our season status, the process behind decisions, important upcoming dates and timelines, and links to outside COVID Resources. Please visit our COVID-19 FAQ page for answers to our most frequently asked questions.


July 31, 2020: KGK Announces Fall Season Cancellation

Dear KGK Families:

The Kennewick Grid Kids board of directors met on Wednesday, July 29th. With no options off the table, we discussed the future of the 2020 fall season at length. We considered a variety of scenarios including holding a full season, condensing our season, modifying our rules, and providing alternatives such as 7on7. After extensive review and discussion it was determined there is no viable path forward for a season in any form this fall. This was a heartbreaking decision to come to and not taken lightly.

Throughout this season our board has been committed to honesty, openness, and transparency. With that commitment in mind we would like to share a bit of our thought process with you and what to expect next.


Decision Process:
In June we released guidelines and gating criteria that needed to be met in order to hold a tackle season. The release included contingencies modifying the season length and schedule based on varying attainment dates. In early July it became apparent that the likelihood of attaining Phase 4 was waning. The board began exploring other alternative options including modified rule sets that reduce contact and the possibility of moving to a 7on7 model for fall. These models would allow practice and competition at earlier phases and provide more scheduling flexibility. At the July 29th meeting it was determined that even reduced contact models were not viable. The decision was based on the following factors:

Facility and Field Availability:  Discussions with Kennewick School District and the City of Kennewick made clear that fields would not be available to Kennewick Grid Kids for the fall. These entities are bound by the Washington State Safe Start Plan and the guidance of their insurance carriers. Kennewick Grid Kids has longstanding relationships with both entities that would risk damage if we attempted to use facilities without their permission.

Insurance Limitations:  Our league insurance carrier has informed us that, given current state guidance, we would not be protected should we choose to hold a season. In addition, our standing with the insurance company may be in jeopardy if we were to move forward.

Liability:  Our Washington state non-profit status would be in jeopardy if we decide to proceed with a season against state or local guidance and mandates. In addition, board members potentially would take on personal liability and consequences.

WIAA Season Modifications: While we do not answer to WIAA and are not mandated to follow their lead, Kennewick Grid Kids has a tradition of looking to WIAA for guidance in our season, rules, and policies. Their decision to move football and other moderate or high risk activities to the spring was not taken lightly.

Refund Expectations and Timeline
In June the league made a commitment to hold any 2020 registration fees received until a season start was guaranteed. In the meantime we have limited expenses to only those deemed essential. We will be issuing refunds for registration and uniform fees on August 9th and 10th. Refunds will be issued to the card used to pay at the time of registration. If you have not received your refund by August 17th please email us at info@kgkfootball.com.

Families on payment plans should expect to see multiple refunds as each payment must be refunded separately. In addition, they likely received an email reminder about the August 5th automatic payment. Please be advised that we have cancelled these scheduled payments in the registration system and your account will not be debited.


What does the future hold?
We are excited to announce plans for our first ever KGK Spring Football season to coincide with the WIAA football season beginning in March! We are in the process of working out the details but look for an announcement with more information in the coming months.

Seeking Board Members
We will be holding our annual board meeting and elections via Zoom meeting on Wednesday, August 19th. We anticipate having several board vacancies to fill. Terms will run from August 2020 – November 2021. We hope you’ll join us as we look to the future. For more information on positions please visit www.kennewickgridkids.com/board or email secretary@kgkfootball.com.

We know this announcement is deeply disappointing to many of our families. We share in your sadness and loss. This is the first September in over 60 years that we won’t be spending Saturdays at the fields. We will miss the activity, laughter, and traditions more than we could ever express. However, we know that we will rise, the traditions will resume, and we will see you again. Thank you to our families for your support and words of encouragement as we have navigated these uncertain and unprecedented times.

Regards,
Kennewick Grid Kids Board of Directors

July 22, 2020: STATEMENT ON WIAA SPORTS SEASON MODIFICATIONS

While we were saddened by the WIAA decision last night to postpone the fall football season we were not surprised. We are grateful for the creativity and out of the box thinking that will allow high school football to go on, albeit on a different timeline.

This announcement undoubtedly impacts the Kennewick Grid Kids 2020 fall season. We understand the importance of youth sports for the physical, mental, and social wellbeing of the athletes we serve. We remain committed to our league values and mission. Our board of directors is actively gathering information for and discussing every option available to us. An announcement regarding our path forward will be made on July 31, 2020. The announcement will be communicated through social media, our website, and email.

Kennewick Grid Kids would like to thank WIAA for their leadership and the countless hours they have put into safety plans, return to play guidelines, and commitment to ensuring all athletes have an opportunity this season. We also would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to our families for their loyalty, patience, and flexibility during these unprecedented times.

Regards,

Kennewick Grid Kids Board of Directors


COVID-19 Update: July 16, 2020

Hello KGK Families:

What a crazy year 2020 has been! The KGK Board of Directors has continued to work hard behind the scenes planning for a safe and successful season. While we are still hopeful, we recognize that our opening is getting smaller.  I wanted to take this opportunity to provide you with an update on where we stand, what has changed since our last update, and where we go from here.  As always, if you have any questions or concerns please reach out to us at info@kgkfootball.com or contact your organization's head coach.

Regards,
Jeff Boyus
President
 

NEW COVID-19 RESOURCE PAGE
We have put together a new page on our website dedicated to our COVID-19 response. There you will find all of our updates, important dates for the season, links to external resources that guide our decision making, and an FAQ page. Our hope is that having all of the information in one spot will make it easier for you to find what we need and stay up to date.

REGISTRATION
Many of our families are facing uncertainty about what the fall holds making it difficult to make a the financial commitment registration requires. We understand. Therefore, we have extended Early Bird Registration until Benton County enters Phase 2 of the WA Safe Start Plan. The day Benton County moves into Phase 2 registration fees will increase to standard registration rates.

In addition, families who take advantage of the payment plan options will see payments spread out through September giving you an extra month and smaller payments.

Our COVID cancellation refund guarantee is still in place for all registrations. Please note that you do not need to purchase the optional 3rd party insurance during registration to be eligible for COVID related refunds.

SEASON ALTERNATIVES
KGK's first priority is to bring our families the traditional grid kids season we all love. As restrictions remain and leagues from youth to college in Washington and around the country begin cancelling their seasons that goal becomes more difficult to achieve. The options available to us are dependent on WIAA guidelines and local and state restrictions. We are actively working on putting together alternate options for interested families in the event our tackle season is cancelled. With WIAA meeting next week and our Board of Directors meeting the following week we anticipate making an announcement on July 31st.


Walk-In Registration Cancelled - Register Online

Due to guidance from the Department of Health to reduce paperwork and the ongoing scheduling limitations caused by the COVID-19 virus Kennewick Grid Kids is transitioning to an all online registration model for the 2020 season.

Most of our families will notice very little change - 70% of all registrations in 2019 were done through our online registration system. However, families requesting financial assistance or wishing to be "grandfathered" to a team had to complete registration in person at one of our walk up dates. Often, this process also precluded families from taking advantage of Early Bird Discounts. We are excited to announce these applications can now be submitted electronically.

Please note that we do not anticipate offering any in-person registration events this year and encourage families to register before July 15th for the best rates.

The Registration "COVID-19 Response" is not currently available.


COVID-19 Update: June 5th, 2020

Hello KGK Families:

Kennewick Grid Kids understands that this is a time of uncertainty for everyone. As a league we are committed to transparency and communication with our families. This week, our board of directors met and approved plans for the 2020 season. I would like to take a moment to share those plans with you. It is my sincere hope that being armed with this information alleviates some of your concerns and uncertainty. This season may look a bit different than past seasons but one thing will never change: our commitment to providing a fun and robust football experience that teaches life skills our athletes will use on and off the field. If you have any questions or concerns please contact us by email or reach out to your organization's head coach. I look forward to seeing you all at Eastgate Park soon!

Regards,
Jeff Boyus
 

What will the season look like?

The answer to this question is complex and depends on how quickly we move through Washington's Safe Start Plan. We know that Benton County must be in Phase 4 for practices and games to begin. We have created 5 potential schedules and models. Each model is determined by the date Benton County is approved for Phase 4. The longer we have to wait, the higher the impact on the season. Each model is outlined in the chart below - green represents the lowest impact, red the highest.
 

Cutoff Dates - Moving through the phases

The KGK board has set cut-off dates for entry into the Safe Start Plan. These are dates we know have to be met in order for the season to happen. If at any point, a target date is not met we will cancel the season and issue refunds within 7 days. In the event gear has been issued we will issue refunds within 7 days of gear return. 

Phase 2: August 2, 2020

Phase 3: August 23, 2020
Benton County must be in Phase 3 to hold in person preseason activities such as gear pick up

Phase 4: September 13, 2020
Benton County must be in Phase 4 to hold player to player contact practices or games.

Please note that COVID-19 related cancellation refunds are guaranteed by the league and do not require the purchase of insurance during registration.


COVID-19 Update: May 21, 2020

Dear KGK Families:

Let me start by saying that I hope this letter finds your family safe and healthy.  The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every member of our community in some form. Whether you are trying to navigate the new world of distance learning, have had your spring or summer sports seasons cancelled or postponed, lost a job, are working from home while caring for your family, or are working on the front lines our thoughts are with each of you.

We have heard from many of you and know that you are anxious about what’s on the horizon for Kennewick Grid Kids and the 2020 football season. The KGK Board of Directors and head coaches have been monitoring the COVID-19 crisis closely and been in frequent communication about the potential impact to our league and fall season.  However, we have tried to be careful about making assumptions or releasing information until we had a firmer grasp of the situation and the direction the state appears to be going. Although our season is still several months away, we have been busy behind the scenes to prepare for a variety of scenarios.

Based on the guidance issued by Governor Inslee’s office we believe that we will be in Phase 4 and able to have a robust fall football season this year. However, we have learned to expect and be prepared for the unexpected and have contingency plans in place in the event they are needed. As a league we are limiting our expenditures to only mandatory and necessary expenses at this time. In addition, we have been working on backup plans for what activities like gear pick up, tryouts, and draft might look like if we have not been released into Phase 4 by the time those events take place. Our Player Safety Coordinator is attending CDC teleconferences, working on sanitization plans, and developing ill player protocols.  As the season approaches we will be working with local officials and sports governing boards to implement best safety practices across our league.

Kennewick Grid Kids has a long history in our community. It is our desire to continue that tradition this season and I am excited about the future. If you have any questions or concerns not addressed please reach out to us at info@kgkfootball.com or contact your organization’s head coach and we will do our best to answer them. We’re looking forward to seeing you at the fields soon!

Regards,

Jeff Boyus
President
Kennewick Grid Kids Football



Other Resources

Benton-Franklin Health Department

Status of Benton and Franklin Counties

WA State Safe Start Status

Find out what phase different Washington State counties are in, view frequently asked questions, and learn what each phase means

WIAA COVID Response

General and sport specific guidelines from the Washington Interscholastic Athletic Association

NFHS Return to Play Guidelines

National Federation of State High School Associations guidance for opening up high school athletics and activities

Kennewick Grid Kids Sponsors

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Contact us at sponsorships@kgkfootball.com

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