Fairfield-area college district authorizes fall sports activities below pointers from MPA
Scholar athletes in Maine Faculty Administrative District 49 will be capable of hit the sector this fall after the college board voted to authorize modified seasons at a gathering Thursday night time.
In an 11-1 vote, the board approve athletics, with a collection of strict well being and security guidelines advisable by the state and the Maine Principal’s Affiliation.
These pointers embrace:
• A capability of 1o0 folks for video games which incorporates athletes, coaches and officers.
• All coaches, workers, officers and followers should put on face coverings.
• Social distancing should be maintained throughout practices and video games, which incorporates prohibiting hugging, excessive fives, shaking arms or fist bumps.
• Athletes, workers, coaches and officers ought to full a private well being screening every day earlier than coming to practices or video games.
• Any particular person who has signs or is sick, should keep house.
Moreover, the district, which serves the cities of Albion, Benton, Clinton and Fairfield, will solely provide soccer in a 7 x 7 abilities and improvement format.
“The children really want this,” District Athletic Director David Packard mentioned. “We’re feeling good and excited to simply get going.”
Earlier than the assembly, roughly 50 mother and father and college students gathered within the parking zone of Lawrence Junior Excessive Faculty with indicators.
Trina Nickerson, whose two kids attend and play sports activities at Lawrence Excessive Faculty, mentioned the group congregated in order that the board members might “see the faces of the children they decide about.”
“It will be horrible for them to overlook out,” Nickerson mentioned.
Earlier than the vote, the board heard from Chris Sementelli, program supervisor of sports activities medication at MaineGeneral Hospital, Dr. Robert Stevens, a major care supplier at MaineGeneral and sports activities medication doctor, and David Packard, the director of athletics for MSAD 49.
Of their displays to the board, Sementelli, Stevens and Packard agreed that sports activities might function safely below the rules.
“This isn’t a zero danger state of affairs,” Stevens mentioned. “There isn’t a method to do that with out some danger. … Even if we take away sports activities, its not a zero danger state of affairs. … My private opinion, I believe this may be accomplished safely with the chance comparatively low.”
Sementelli introduced an emergency plan that workers at MaineGeneral created with the district’s athletic workers that recognized measures the district might take to mitigate the unfold of the virus.
These measures embrace: assigning danger assessments for particular person sports activities; offering education about potential non-student, at-risk teams, like coaches, relations of athletes and workers; and making a COVID-19 response power comprised of workers within the district who might deal with “something associated to COVID.”
The board additionally heard from group members like Alissa Roy.
Roy urged the board to authorize sports activities and introduced factors from a research by the American Academy of Pediatrics, which she printed and handed out to every board member.
Roy mentioned that the board ought to enable sports activities as a result of they supply psychological and bodily advantages, the sports activities could be held exterior and since the counties that the district serves have low circumstances of COVID-19.
“I don’t understand how you guys are voting; please take into consideration (it),” Roy mentioned. “And take this data objectively. I hope you guys can vote to approve fall sports activities.”
The board had little dialogue earlier than approving fall sports activities.
“I applaud all of you,” board member Stewart Kinley mentioned after the vote. “I’ve already thought of sports activities part of the tutorial course of; it’s not an additional or an add on.”
Upon listening to the information, college students had been heard cheering within the parking zone. Amongst them was Victoria Dunphy, a senior discipline hockey participant who’s assured that athletes can comply with the rules set forth for the autumn.
“We are able to positively do that. That is so nice for us,” Dunphy mentioned. “I don’t assume our college would be capable of handle very lengthy with out sports activities so I’m feeling good.”
Kathie Dunphy, Victoria’s mother, mentioned she’s overjoyed that the scholars are capable of play sports activities this fall.
“I’m very blissful, that is very emotional for me,” Kathie mentioned. “I’m in well being care, and I do know the psychological well being side of sports activities. And with children in sports activities, it retains them in the appropriate route. This is essential.”