FORSYTH COUNTY, N.C. — Despite the coronavirus pandemic, high school athletes with Winston-Salem/ Forsyth County Schools will resume voluntary workouts on Monday.
At first, student athletes were gearing up to begin workouts on July 6th. But, the school district pushed the start date to July 20th out of extreme caution. Days later, high school principals unanimously decided to delay workouts for the second time due to the COVID-19 crisis. After about one month of waiting, athletic teams will return to campus for voluntary workouts for Fall sports only.
WS/FCS is following guidelines set by The North Carolina High School Athletic Association to ensure the health and safety of all coaches and students. The NCHSAA is a voluntary, non-profit corporation which administers the state’s interscholastic athletic program.
The school district is also working to ensure each high school has the necessary supplies and equipment needed to provide safe and clean facilities. School leaders say all athletic personnel have been trained to follow the NCHSAA’s guidelines. That includes the use of face coverings, cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, limiting gatherings, implementing social distancing measures, and practicing basic hygiene.
Due to the global health crisis, Governor Roy Cooper says, the Association is responsible for deciding if, when, and how to resume high school sports in North Carolina. The official start of Fall sports is delayed until at least September 1, 2020. Dates have not been established for Winter, Spring, and Middle School sports at this time.
“For now, we believe these steps provide hope for our student-athletes, and the possibility for playing fall sports,” said Que Tucker, Commissioner of NCHSAA. “Please understand this delayed start date is not “in cement” and can be delayed even further if we do not have improved data from DHHS, or some other reason exists for delaying further into September or beyond.”
As part of the NCHSAA’s guidelines, all student athletes who have a valid pre-participation physical examination on or after March 1, 2019 will be granted a temporary one-year extension through the end of the 2020-21 academic year. If a student does not have a valid physical on or after March 1, 2019, he/she will need an updated physical examination prior to participating in any workouts.
To view the full list of NCHSAA's guidelines for reopening summer workouts and activities, click here.