TAMAQUA, Pa. — The Schuylkill League's decision to not allow fans of any away team at sporting events this fall was not taken lightly, according to Tamaqua Assistant Superintendent and Schuylkill League President, Dr. Stephen Toth.
"Our superintendents felt that it was in the best interest of each school district to only allow home fans at events," Dr. Toth said. "This is obviously not ideal. We know that this can be a heartbreaking decision. We know that it's not something that's in the best interest of fans."
"Obviously things change frequently and we have to adapt to those changes and do what's in the best interest not only of our school, our league, but also our student athletes," Tamaqua Athletic Director Mike Hromyak added.
Responsibility that falls on each individual school's athletic director.
"Communication among athletic directors is going to be very important," Hromyak said. "It's imperative that we know how many from a visiting school's going to come. There's a lot of individuals that are just for game-management and that number adds up quick, too."
"Officials, clock operators, chain crew," Dr. Toth added. "You need to have maintenance people there in case the lights go out."
"It's very important that we have exact numbers that are going to be walking through the gate," Hromyak concluded.
It's even more of a logistical challenge inside, where the limit is 25.
"People obviously see the football and soccer thing with 250 is an issue," Dr. Toth said. "It's even worse for the indoor sports like volleyball. You can't even have full teams."
While communication will be the key, school officials also ask for patience and understanding from parents.
"We have some very difficult decisions not only here at Tamaqua, but throughout every school probably in Pennsylvania," Hromyak said. "So it's something that we need the understanding of our community and of our parents. We are doing everything we possibly can."
That includes live streaming games, when possible.