CONNELL - It appears that Connell will get a shot at the playoffs after all, according to a press release published by the Washington Interscholastic Athletics Association. Harsh sanctions were imposed by the WIAA after racial slurs were shouted at a home game between Connell’s and Zillah’s girls’ basketball clubs on May 22.
On June 6, the WIAA heard an appeal from the North Franklin School District regarding the racist acts. The appeal to the WIAA Executive Committee requested that the sanction of not allowing the Connell High School basketball teams to participate in the postseason, as well as the sanction prohibiting parents from attending any contests for the remainder of the year, be overturned on June 12.
The WIAA has granted the appeal as there was no evidence of any Connell student-participants or parents contributing to the racist acts.
The Committee also added the following sanctions to protect the victims in the short term and to create long term systemic change:
● Connell High School administrators and all participants, including coaches, must complete the NFHS Implicit Bias class, or equivalent, prior to being allowed to attend/participate in any Connell High School playoff event/contest.
● Connell High School cannot host any contests this year.
● Connell High School is placed on a one-year probation.
● Connell High School is assessed a $1,000 fine to be used by the school to develop, with league input, an SCAC League-wide Student Sportsmanship Conference that allows students from every high school in the League to attend and participate in student initiatives, with clearly stated outcomes that address sportsmanship, respect, and anti-bias behavior among the League.