The University Interscholastic League unveiled a handful of guidelines on Friday for schools looking to begin strength and conditioning workouts and sport specific skill instruction next month.
Starting June 8, schools may begin both, so long as they follow a set of requirements that aim to prioritize health and safety amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are cautiously optimistic about beginning summer strength and conditioning programs and marching band practices that safely allow students to get back to working with their coaches and directors in preparation for the 2020-2021 school year,” UIL Executive Director Dr. Charles Breithaupt said.
“While we are eager to resume UIL activities, we must do so carefully, deliberately and with an understanding that major adjustments are needed to ensure safety. The requirements outline an approach designed to help schools mitigate risk while ensuring students are physically prepared to return to activities in the Fall, should state and federal guidelines allow.”
The UIL canceled its spring sports championships, which were interrupted just as the boys’ basketball tournament was getting started in March. Schools have been closed for about two months.
Rules for summer conditioning programs require workouts be voluntary and students should be allowed to participate virtually from home if they want to. No showers or locker rooms can be used and there should be at least one staff member per 20 students to ensure proper social distancing, hygiene and safety measures.
Schools must provide hand sanitizer or hand-washing stations. All equipment must be disinfected throughout the day.
Schools are also encouraged to pre-screen any students or staff prior to workouts for any signs of illness.