Spring sports are back and parents and kids alike are thrilled. Fresh air, exercise, and a sense of “normal” is a welcome change after a year of restrictions. We are thrilled, too, but we also want to make sure the rules of the game are clear, as we are not out of the woods when it comes to COVID.
Don’t Brush Off Precautions
While it’s true that the risk of virus spread is less outdoors, it still exists. Rather than throw caution (and face masks) to the wind, keep some protocols in place to protect your players. Spacing on the bench, masks in the dugout, sanitizing stations and more can go a long way to keeping your team from being sidelined.
Take Quarantine Time Outs Seriously
Parents are always asking…my kid can’t go to school because of a possible exposure. Can they still go to practice? The answer is no. If you are quarantined from school, you are quarantined from sports, too. Don’t take unnecessary risks. Protect your teammates and their families so we can keep virus spread to a minimum. Sports are back, so let’s keep them running by practicing safely.
Get Your Stats Straight
Until you have a COVID positive case or exposure in your house, you may not pay much attention to the timelines. So here’s a breakdown:
If you test positive to COVID, you must quarantine for 10 days (from your positive test).
If you were exposed to COVID, you must quarantine for 14 days. Eager to get back to the game sooner? If you have no symptoms, you can get a PCR test 5-7 days after your most recent exposure to the virus. For example, if Johnny was exposed to COVID at the game on Saturday, he can get a PCR test as of Thursday. If the PCR test is negative, Johnny can return to the game after 10 days of quarantine (versus 14 days).
If one child was exposed, do my other kids have to stay home too? No. Only the person(s) directly exposed need to quarantine. Other family members are considered a secondary exposure and do not have to quarantine (unless the person originally exposed ends up testing positive. Then a quarantine would be in place for siblings, too.)
Finalize Your Playbook
Encourage your organization to have solid COVID policies in place. Let parents know what they can expect of you, the organization, and what you expect of them. Have open communication about cases and work to protect one another.