Letter to the editor: Shekinah field closed during pandemic

(Posted May 1, 2020)

At Shekinah, we have a strong desire to be supportive of the greater Plain City community and, really, all of Madison and southern Union County. We believe that during this time of crisis it’s vital for us to be supportive of the people around us, regardless of community or school affiliation. That’s what makes this so difficult to write.

Unfortunately, over the last couple of weeks, we have identified multiple people from the area that are unaffiliated with our school who are attempting to use our baseball field without authorization because other field space is closed in the area. Some have stated that because we are a private school they figured we are exempt from Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s orders and those put forth by the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA).

Shekinah does rent out our field under normal operations and is certainly open to discussions with families, local baseball associations, and other local schools about field usage when our school teams are not needing it. However, we believe it is vital to support the health and well-being of our community during this pandemic by keeping our athletic facilities closed. Even as a private school, we have an obligation to comply with the governor’s school building closure order, as well as the stay-at-home order, and guidelines from the OHSAA that our athletic facilities remain closed temporarily.  The closure of our athletic facilities applies to our own students, staff and coaches, as well, and has since the governor originally closed schools in Ohio.

Again, we would welcome individuals, families, schools or groups to reach out after the crisis has passed if they need access to baseball field space for practice. At Shekinah, we believe in the value of family time, physical activity for students, and enjoying outdoor activities, including sports. We are hoping that by sharing this information that perhaps it will bring greater awareness regarding our desire to be supportive of families, while also clarifying a misconception about the availability of our facilities.

Brice Kauffman, school administrator

Shekinah Christian School

Plain City

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