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Football openers on standby as Spokane Public Schools await word from teacher’s union

City high schools had yet to hear by Wednesday evening whether they had the go-ahead to play season-opening football games Friday – strike or no strike.

Greater Spokane League secretary Herb Rotchford on Tuesday asked Spokane Public Schools officials and Spokane Education Association members for direction regarding football games this weekend. Rotchford said opposing teams traveling to Spokane and even parents traveling to away games had the right to know if they were playing or not.

Lakeside of Seattle parents, whose team is scheduled to play Shadle Park on Saturday at Albi Stadium, had secured motel rooms.

“They deserve to receive notice so that if we don’t play they can cancel their motel reservations,” Rotchford said.

Rotchford was told Wednesday evening that the school district would not cancel the games in the event of a strike.

“We are waiting for the SEA (the union) to say OK,” Rotchford wrote in a text message. “If they say no, then we cancel. So we are waiting on the union to make a decision.”

Lewis and Clark is scheduled to play host to Lake City at Albi on Friday, while North Central travels to Lewiston and Rogers goes to Eastmont in Wenatchee.

Ferris is scheduled to play Saturday afternoon against Olympia as part of the Emerald City Kickoff Classic at the University of Washington.

Rotchford said Ferris parents planning to travel to Seattle are also in limbo regarding motels. He expected to have final direction by Wednesday afternoon, and grew increasingly frustrated as hours passed into the evening.

“I have no choice but to move forward as the schedule dictates,” Rotchford went on to say in a text. “We have not heard ‘yes’ but I have not heard ‘no’ either. We owe it to our out-of-town visiting teams to give them a timely decision. It’s very frustrating.”

Lake City athletic director Jim Winger said he had made contingency plans for the Timberwolves to travel to Eastmont should the city teams be grounded.

In the Tri-Cities, teachers in the Pasco School District are on strike. But athletics is allowed to continue.

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