Dear FIRST Chesapeake Community,
The FIRST Chesapeake board met this morning and made the difficult decision to cancel this week’s Portsmouth and Owings Mills District Events, as well as next week’s Blacksburg District Event and Edgewater District Event Sponsored by Leidos. The health and welfare of our teams and volunteers has always been our highest priority. Given the dramatic increase of COVID 19 confirmed cases and the unprecedented number of school closings and revised travel restrictions over the past 24 hours, we feel it is in the best interest of everyone to cancel.
The FIRST Chesapeake District Championship Sponsored by Newport News Shipbuilding has been postponed to June 17th-20th, 2020. While we realize that this is not a perfect solution, we hope that moving the District Championship to a later date will allow teams to enjoy the excitement and energy of a FIRST Robotics Competition.
We are disappointed that teams will not have a chance to finish the competition season this Spring, and we recognize that there will be many questions about how this will affect team rankings and the FIRST World Championship. We are working with FIRST Headquarters to determine next steps for advancement to our District Championship and FIRST World Championship Competitions.
There will be a dial in Town Hall this afternoon at 5:30pm. We will give an update and answer as many questions as we can at this time. This meeting will also be recorded and posted on the FIRST Chesapeake webpage under COVID 19 updates.
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Meeting ID: 149 717 1975
We recognize the tremendous amount of hard work that the teams and the local committees have put into this season. We also know that some teams and volunteers may lose deposits for this weekend. The situation has been a moving target with many variables. This was not an easy decision, but we feel it is the right one.
We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work with FIRST Headquarters to solidify a plan for FIRST World Championship and the District Event Sponsored by Newport News Shipbuilding this summer.
Leighann Scott Boland James Kresge
Executive Director Board Chair
FIRST Chesapeake realizes that information regarding COVID-19 is rapidly changing from day to day. Be assured that the health and safety of FIRST Chesapeake teams and volunteers are our top priorities. We are currently following the guidelines and recommendations established by local health departments, the CDC, and school districts and are taking steps to promote good hygiene practices and common-sense measures at our events, These include:
We will strive to keep this information updated and maintain up-to-date event information throughout the season.
Click here (https://www.firstinspires.org/covid-19) for the official statement regarding COVID-19 from FIRST Headquarters.
The application deadline for submissions to the Jim and Laraine Schubert Unsung Hero: Mentor of the Year Award is now March 13th.
Do you have questions about the selection process for Dean’s List within the FIRST Chesapeake District? Described below is the current plan for how the Dean's List Award (DLA) judges will be selecting the Dean's List Finalists from the FIRST Chesapeake District. We will keep you informed and updated if any changes to this process are made during the season.
The DLA judging team will hold Dean's List interviews at five of the local district events — Haymarket, Bethesda, Richmond, Edgewater and Portsmouth. Our Dean's List District Manager, Stephanie Lockhart, sent an email to all the mentors February 20th to notify them of their assigned interview location. There will be the opportunity to select a different venue (from the five), if the one assigned is a major conflict for the DLA nominee. If you nominated two students, BOTH students must be interviewed at the same event.
Students will be randomly assigned to a time slot for an interview on the Saturday of the event. The interview schedule with assigned times will be posted at Pit Admin on Friday afternoon/evening. Students may change their time slot. However, it will be the student’s responsibility to find another student who is willing to switch interview slots with them.
Each DLA judging team from the five interview sites will select two to three semi-finalist to advance to the District Championship. The semi-finalist selected at these district events will be recognized during that district award’s ceremony. These semi-finalists will be interviewed a second time at the CHS District Championship Sponsored by Newport News Shipbuilding on Saturday April 4th. The Dean's List Finalists from the FIRST Chesapeake District will be announced during the Awards Ceremony on April 5th.
Three Dean’s List Award Finalists will be selected at the FIRST District Championship Sponsored by Newport News Shipbuilding and will move on to be considered for the DLA at the FIRST Detroit Championship Event on April 29 - May 2.
FIRST is offering their FIRST Tech Challenge Jump Start program again for 2020. Follow their early registration instructions and qualify for a grant to cover 2020-2021 season registration ($275).
For more details see the website- https://info.firstinspires.org/firsttechchallenge-2020-jumpstart