The Museum School of Avondale Estates Athletics: Proposal for Return to Play

 

OVERVIEW:

The Museum School of Avondale Estates (TMS) Athletics Department has developed an optimal approach to delivering a middle school athletics program (grades 5-8) under various return to school and play scenarios, in relation to the mitigation of the spread of COVID-19. These protocols are presented with the intent of offering programs that are carried out in a safe and healthy manner, and within the guidelines of international, federal, state, and local authorities. These efforts should be considered in light of the various scenarios under consideration as we plan for the 2021/22 school fall/spring term. These guidelines are for the protection of all athletes, coaches, and Athletic Department staff in accordance with the National Federation of State High School Associations guidelines, CDC, GHSA, MAAC, and TMS Health and Safety Taskforce guidelines/policies. These guidelines are subject to change over time as we learn more about COVID 19. These guidelines are to cover all aspects of athletics, health/safety of student-athletes, coaches, parents, and athlete education, transportation, etc.

 

The TMS offerings for spring of 2022 are Girls Soccer, Track and Field (co-ed), and Boys Baseball. TMS will host practices on school property for track and field, boys soccer practices and home matches are hosted at Midway Park, with away matches being hosted by other MAAC schools. Boys Baseball practices will be held at the DHYL locations. 

 

GOAL:

Ensure that TMS students, coaches, and parents are able to benefit from various athletic experiences in a safe, reliable, and functional manner, with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic, and various healthy agencies recommendations. 

 

School-sponsored sports and extracurricular activities provide students with enrichment opportunities that can help them learn and achieve, and support their social, emotional, and mental health. People who are fully vaccinated no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, including while participating in sports and extracurricular activities. People who are fully vaccinated and boosted can also refrain from quarantine following a known exposure if asymptomatic, facilitating continued participation in in-person learning, sports, and extracurricular activities. Due to increased exhalation that occurs during physical activity, some sports can put players, coaches, trainers, and others who are not fully vaccinated at increased risk for getting and spreading COVID-19. Close contact sports and indoor sports are particularly risky. Similar risks might exist for other extracurricular activities, such as band, choir, theater, and school clubs that meet indoors.

 

Prevention strategies for those who are not fully vaccinated in these activities remain important and should comply with school day policies and procedures. Students should refrain from these activities when they have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and should be tested. Students who are not fully vaccinated and participate in indoor sports and other higher-risk activities should continue to wear masks and keep physical distance as much as possible.

 

The following guidelines have been created to allow students, coaches, and parents to participate in TMS sports. 

 

Parents and Transportation Guidelines:

  • Parents, guardians, or caregivers must register their student athlete for TMS fall sports. With that registration, each parents, guardians, or caregivers must sign the COVID regulations page and the COVID agreement page of the registration. NO EXCEPTIONS will be made, and a student athlete cannot participate if this is not completed by the first practice session. 

  • Each student athlete is permitted one parent or guardian to attend any practices/matches/meets. The parent or guardian must be masked at all times and must remain at least 6ft away from all players, coaches, and officials

    • Exceptions will be made for additional children that need to be in attendance, but these children must be masked and remain at least 6ft apart from players, coaches, and officials.

  • Limited spectators are allowed on the field or track before, during, or after practices/matches/meets.

  • Spectators are not allowed to leave competition and return to competition.

  • If parents, guardians, or caregivers, by necessity, need to transport additional TMS students, masks should be worn in the vehicle at all times be all occupants. 

  • If TMS is providing transportation (this will only happen to the Track and Field Championships), TMS will ensure social distancing, appropriate spacing, and vehicle cleanliness. 

Spring Sports Guidelines:

Though all Spring sports are outdoors, all coaches and student athletes must wear masks except when in active practice or competition. Spectators must be masked and distanced when possible at all times. 


 

MAAC and DHYL Guidelines:

All MAAC and DHYL (Baseball) participants will agree to guidelines that will provide the safest environment for all student athletes, coaches, officials, parents/guardians/caregivers, and school/athletics staff. If any representative of TMS (student athletes, coaches, parents/guardians/caregivers, and school/athletics staff) does not abide by the provisions set above then TMS Athletics Coordinator, MAAC Director, or DHYL Director reserve the right to remove TMS from the schedule for future games/matches/meets.