Today the Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Association (ACAA) announced that it will be returning to full competition for the 2021-22 season. The decision was made following consultation among athletic directors and a decision by the presidents of its member institutions.
The ACAA is made up of ten member schools from across the Maritimes provinces, with four schools from Nova Scotia—the University of King’s College, Dalhousie Agricultural Campus, Mount Saint Vincent and Université Sainte-Anne; five schools coming from New Brunswick—Crandall, Mount Allison, St. Thomas, UNB Saint John and UNB Fredericton; and one from Prince Edward Island—Holland College.
One year ago, the ACAA cancelled fall sports due to the Covid-19 pandemic and made the same decision for winter sports in October. During the academic year, there was some training and practices on campuses for many teams, and later in the year, as the pandemic situation improved and operational plans for players and facilities were developed, there was exhibition play for winter sports.
Provinces in the region are implementing staged easing of restrictions. Universities and colleges have started to announce academic plans for September which include a significant portion of in-person classes and on-campus activities. In a conference call earlier this week, the presidents of the ACAA institutions supported the competition plan proposed by the athletic directors. The ACAA’s Return to Play Plan will continue to be in operation as it provides guidance for participants, facilities, and travel. The plan enacts conference-wide health and safety policies for participating student-athletes, which align with the public health policies in each province and on each campus.
“As our student-athletes return to competition, our priority remains safety and health. We share in the optimism about returning to more normal campus operations, and we will continue to take a measured approach to student-athlete safety and health and follow all current public health directives,” said University of King’s College President William Lahey, who chaired the meeting of the presidents.
The 2021-22 schedules for each varsity sport have been approved and will be announced shortly. The training camps for fall sports are scheduled to begin conference wide on August 27.