HARTFORD, Mich. (WOOD) — Hartford Public Schools is canceling its varsity football program this season, only offering junior varsity, the district announced Wednesday.

The decision was made after evaluating the players who were showing up to practice. Due to the best interest for the health, safety and growth of the program, only junior varsity will be offered, according to a letter sent to football families by the Hartford Athletic Department.

“With only six combined juniors and seniors, it was not feasible or responsible to expect a young team to safely compete at a varsity level,” the letter read.

Hartford Public Schools said the decision did not come lightly, acknowledging that the “unfortunate” decision meant the seniors would not be able to play.

“(The decision) was made with the best interest of the student-athlete in mind,” read the letter.