On December 8, 2021

Windsor Central School announces winter sports plan

Staff report

In a letter to Windsor Central Supervisor Union (WCSU) families, dated Dec. 3, Superintendent Sherry Sousa outlined its proposed winter sports guidelines for elementary and middle/high schools. The proposal will be discussed and finalized at the district board meeting on Dec. 13; until then, current fall guidelines remain in place.

“I know that we all want to return to ‘normal,’” Sousa wrote, adding, “We aren’t there yet and may not for awhile, so I am asking again for your patience and assistance in keeping our students in school, and buildings healthy.”

For Woodstock Elementary Rec Center basketball, the requirements are:

  • All volunteer coaches must be fully vaccinated and wear masks at all times.
  • All participants must show either a vaccination card or will need to have and show a negative Covid test each week.
  • All players must also wear masks during all basketball activities.
  • No spectators would be permitted for home games and all officials must be masked and vaccinated.

For high school and middle school co-curricular activities which include sports and creative arts programs:

  • Vaccination is strongly encouraged for all eligible student-athletes.
  • Masks must be worn upon entering both the Woodstock Union High School/Middle School and the Union Arena at all times by all student-athletes, coaching staff, referees, and spectators during all indoor practices and games, regardless of individual vaccination status. Masking is also a requirement on public school transportation and in locker rooms.
  • Spectators: The number of spectators allowed to attend WUHSMS events is limited to provide sufficient space for physical distancing. The number of guest fans (those who do not attend or work at WUHSMS) is limited to four fans per player. Home and visitor bleacher sections will be clearly labeled. For away games all players and fans attending away games must adhere to the protocols required by that venue. Other schools may limit or not allow visiting fans.

Live-streaming

All home high school basketball games will be live-streamed on the NFHS Network. The majority of away games will be live-streamed on the NFHS network as well.

All home ice hockey games will be live-streamed on LiveBarn. The majority of away rinks also use LiveBarn for their live streaming.

Vaccination rates and tracing

“I want to reinforce Katie Burke’s request for permission for the Test to Stay program if your elementary aged child isn’t vaccinated,” Sousa wrote in the Dec. 3 letter to parents. “This would avoid quarantining if they are non-symptomatic and allow them to continue with their teachers and classmates.”

Vaccination rates in WCSU as of Nov. 30:

  • Killington Elementary- 37.5%
  • Woodstock Elementary – 66.6%
  • Reading Elementary – 33.5%
  • Barnard Academy – 36.1%
  • Prosper Valley – 39.3%
  • Woodstock Union Middle & High Schools – 80%

Vermont schools will maintain responsibility for internal contact tracing when a student-athlete or staff participates in a school-based sports program while infectious; the Vermont Dept. of Health will undertake contact tracing for any identified close contacts to infectious spectators.

“Thank you all for your support through this long and tiring health challenge. The work to keep schools open has taxed all of our patience and tested our resilience. I ask again that we commit to a shared goal of student health and learning, and that we face this difficult time together,” Sousa concluded.

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