NJSIAA updates calendar for high school sports season

Girls gymnastics and volleyball shift to February of 2021 while outdoor fall sports remain on track to begin with practice on September 14. Read more on the updated calendar for fall and winter sports.


The NJSIAA remains committed to returning high school sports to New Jersey in October. The organization’s Sports Advisory Task Force released its return to sports plan which gives new details on schedules for fall and winter sports.

Here are the key details from the latest NJSIAA Update:

  • Girls volleyball and girls gymnastics, the only two indoor fall sports have been moved to a February 16 start date with competition beginning on March 3rd
  • Outdoor fall sports remain on track to begin with practice on September 14th and October 2nd as they start of competition (girls tennis on 9/28)
  • Winter sports will begin practice on December 3rd with the first date of competition set for December 21st. Post-season play will begin on February 5th and run through February 17th
  • If fall sports is postponed, it will move to the timetable of girls gymnastic and volleyball (March 3rd through April 24th)
  • There is no start date for spring sports at this time, but the task force says the start date will likely be pushed back and it recognizes the need to maximize spring sports after last year’s cancellation.

Here is the full press release from the NJSIAA:

Today, the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association’s (NJSIAA) Sports Advisory Task Force released its Return-to-Sports Plan, which provides detailed schedules for fall and winter sports.  The dates for the spring sports season will be announced at a later date; the task force recognizes the need to maximize the spring season due to the loss of the season last school year.

The outdoor fall sports – football, cross country, field hockey, girls tennis and soccer – will begin practice on September 14.  Girls tennis will begin competition on September 28.  Cross country, field hockey and soccer will begin competition on October 1, and opening day for the football season will be Friday, October 2.

The indoor fall sports – gymnastics and girls volleyball – will be moved to a new, special season that will begin with practices on February 16 and competition on March 3.  If circumstances change, and NJSIAA is unable to have a fall season, the outdoor fall sports will also be played at this time.

Winter sports teams may begin practicing on December 3.  Winter sport competition will begin on December 21.

All of these dates are subject to change based on guidance from the Governor and Department of Health. 

The Sports Advisory Task Force was guided by a set of principles that take into account the unique circumstances that we all are living through.  Their goals were to ensure health and safety; promote participation, not championships; limit travel; and stay flexible in the face of changing circumstances.

With these principles in mind, schedules will be condensed, competition will be local, out-of-state competition will be prohibited (unless a waiver is granted for exceptional circumstances), and post-season play will be limited and local, with no statewide championships.

“We’re extremely appreciative of the support and guidance from Governor Murphy, Senator Paul Sarlo and Assemblyman Benjie Wimberly,” said NJSIAA COO Colleen Maguire. “Our kids need structured activity, and we believe that education-based high school sports is the best way to provide it. Giving teenagers extra motivation to stay COVID-free promotes healthy outcomes for everyone.”