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I hope that you are staying safe and healthy.  As we implement our return to school plan and start the 2nd quarter,I wanted to give you an update on the latest happenings regarding our extracurricular athletics. Our next season of athletics is boys and girls basketball and cheer. 

Pontiac Junior High School will continue to wait for official guidance from the IDPH, IHSA, SIJHSAA, and partnering Belle-Fair Conference schools regarding a final decision whether basketball and cheer will take place this season. The Illinois Department of Public Health lists basketball as a Medium Risk Sport with competitive cheer being a High Risk Sport.

The Southern Illinois Junior High School Athletic Association (SIJHSAA) is awaiting the final decision from the IDPH regarding a start date for basketball.  There is a tentative start date of November 16th for all basketball and cheer related activities; however, this is tentative and based on the IDPH’s final decision. If the SIJHSAA is allowed to start basketball and cheer activities, Pontiac Junior High School will review those guidelines as well as any other guidelines set forth by the Belle-Fair Conference and make a decision that will keep our students safe and healthy. 

If basketball and cheer activities are allowed to take place, we will hold tryouts for our 7th and 8th grade boys and girls basketball teams and cheer teams on November 16th and 17th; times will be confirmed after an official decision has been made. Games are set to begin on December 1st. 

Student athletes must have a current physical on file; without a current physical, your student will not be permitted to take part in the tryout process. As COVID-19 continues to make it difficult to see a physician without a scheduled appointment, it is very important that your student schedules their physical with your family physician or medical provider as soon as possible.

Students need to be in good academic standing for the tryout process. It is very important that your student stays on top of their school work. 

Students will also be required to sign a “Hold Harmless” waiver, agreeing to the risks associated with COVID-19. This waiver will be finalized and sent out to families after the final decision has been made. 

I hope that this email brings a beacon of hope that we will work towards an athletic season for our students. Extracurriculars are an important aspect of students' experience at Pontiac Junior High School and it is our hope that we will be able to provide this opportunity for our students this year. As news and updates continue to reach us, we will continue to update you as well. If you have any questions at all, please email me at or Brad Gotshall  at We hope to see you very soon!