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New COVID-19 guidelines for K-12 sports

The requirements from the Department of Health impact mask guidance, spectator limits, quarantine periods and more.

SPOKANE, Wash. — The Department of Health (DOH) announced new COVID-19 requirements for K-12 extracurriculars Tuesday.

The new guidelines for the 2021-22 school year will impact extracurricular sports, co-curricular and extracurricular performing arts activities and quarantine periods.

Masks

Face coverings are not required outdoors, regardless of vaccination status.

Masks will not be required for vaccinated students at any risk level of sports and they will not be required for unvaccinated students in low and moderate risk sports. However in high risk sports, which are basketball, wrestling, and water polo, the rules are a bit different for unvaccinated athletes.

Those student athletes have to participate in twice weekly screening testing in order to not have to wear a mask while playing. If participants don't want to do screening testing, then they have to wear a mask.

Masks will be required for everyone when in weight rooms, regardless of vaccination status.

Referees who are fully vaccinated do not need to wear masks when actively officiating, but when they are talking to coaches or players they are required.

Quarantine Timelines

Fully vaccinated students and staff who do not have symptoms do not have to quarantine when exposed to COVID-19 and may not require COVID-19 testing.

Testing Requirements

According to the DOH, schools must provide screening tests for athletes, coaches, trainers and other personnel who work with athletes who are not fully vaccinated participating in high-contact sports.

Vaccination Requirements

 Schools are not requiring students to be vaccinated.

Spectators 

Everyone attending sports events or performing arts activities must wear a mask indoors and keep three feet of social distancing.

They also have to be seated in family units when watching indoors. That also means that there will be no student sections for indoor sporting events.

Performing Arts Classes

Masking is required by all students and staff in performing arts classes and while participating in performing arts activities.

They also suggest that all performers with aerosol-producing instruments must wear masks or bell covers.