Sarah Byrne sepireland at yahoo.com
Jason Block jblock1 at partners.org
We are excited for soccer to return for the Spring season. To ensure safe play, during a time when the COVID-19 pandemic continues, WUSC has adopted several policies that will protect players, coaches, and families. WUSC policies adhere to guidelines from the Massachusetts Youth Soccer Association, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the State of Massachusetts, and the Wellesley Board of Health. Below, we have provided a bulleted summary of key points regarding guidelines for play (governed by Mass Youth Soccer) as well as quarantine, travel, and testing (governed by the CDC, the Wellesley Board of Health and the State of Massachusetts). Please refer to the links provided for details about these policies. The dynamics of the pandemic are constantly changing. If we learn of changes, we will keep you informed about them.
Most importantly, to keep the kids on the field and our community safe, we must be diligent about these guidelines. As with many states and localities, both the State of Massachusetts and Wellesley are presently experiencing increases in cases, mostly among children and other groups not yet eligible for vaccination.
MA Youth Soccer Play guidelines (5/18/21) - https://www.mayouthsoccer.org/assets/61/6/soccer_activities_protocols_may_18,_v2.pdf
Mass Youth Soccer Protective Equipment and Face Coverings (5/19/21) https://www.mayouthsoccer.org/assets/61/6/protective_equipment_and_facial_coverings_v2.pdf
1) Use TeamSnap and complete health checks prior to all practices and game – tracking participation will facilitate contract tracing for COVID-19, if needed, and health checks will help ensure that players are safe to participate in activities. Children will not be allowed to participate in practice or games if their attendance is not recorded in TeamSnap.
2) Per guidance on May 18/19, 2021, face coverings are no longer required for players during play, including on sidelines and in huddles. Face coverings are also not required for all during other activities (e.g., entering/exiting facilities, for spectators on sidelines) unless they cannot socially distance from people outside of their families. In these cases, if distancing is not possible, masks are required. https://www.mass.gov/doc/safety-standards-for-youth-and-adult-amateur-sports-activities-phase-iv-step-1-effective-on-51821/download. Anyone who prefers to wear masks is encouraged to do so. The CDC still recommends masks for all unvaccinated individuals when they cannot maintain distancing from others - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/participate-in-activities.html.
3) At all times, except during play, players, coaches, and spectators should maintain 6 ft of distance from others.
4) There are no longer limits on the number of spectators allowed at games; however, we encourage some limits to ensure that our fields are not overcrowded.
5) Rules of play have reverted to standard rules.
6) Teams are allowed to play in all Massachusetts towns; however, teams should be very cautious when playing in towns with extensive community spread. The state is still categorizing towns as red, yellow, and green. You can access this information through the state interactive dashboard, under weekly status map - https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-response-reporting#covid-19-interactive-data-dashboard-.
COVID-19 infections and quarantining/testing after exposures/symptoms
1) Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 is required to inform the WUSC COVID Safety Officers (Jason Block and Sarah Byrne) and the WUSC leadership. WUSC will notify the Massachusetts Youth Soccer Association COVID Safety Officer and will reach out to the Wellesley Board of Health to determine next steps regarding notifications. Privacy will be protected throughout this process. Players must obtain a clearance letter from a healthcare provider to return to play. https://www.mayouthsoccer.org/covid-notification-procedures/
2) After a positive test, please follow guidelines regarding when the quarantine is over - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/isolation.html
a. If diagnosed with COVID-19 and symptomatic, q
b. If asymptomatic but test positive for COVID-19,for 10 days after + test.
3) If exposed to someone with COVID-19,for 14 days ideally or 10 as an alternative. Individuals exposed can for 7 if testing negative after day 5. Some exceptions regarding these guidelines apply to individuals who have been vaccinated for COVID-19 or had COVID-19 within 3 months and are without symptoms.
4) If active symptoms of COVID-19, players or coaches will need to get tested and remain out of play until they test negative and symptoms are improving. Those with symptoms will need to see a healthcare provider prior to returning to play.
If traveling out of state, you must follow the State of Massachusetts guidelines. After travel, Massachusetts recommends quarantining for 10 days upon returning or testing with a PCR or Abbott BinaxNOW antigen test within 72 hours of return (or just after returning). Quarantine until tests come back negative. The state now recommends these precautions as an advisory rather than a requirement. This advisory no longer applies to travel outside of Massachusetts for less than 24 hours or for individuals who have been vaccinated for COVID-19.
Vaccinations are now widely available in Massachusetts for all individuals 12 years of age and older. Appointments are available in pharmacies, healthcare facilities, state mass vaccination sites, and school-organized clinics. Information about vaccinations, including how to schedule an appointment, is available on the state website at https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-vaccinations-for-people-under-age-18