Today the MSHSL board voted to go ahead with the fall cross country season in Minnesota. Here are some of the announced parameters:
- All aspects of athletics including meetings, practices, competitions, transportation, and facility usage must align with the requirements of the Minnesota Department of Education plan for return to learning, must follow the requirements from the Minnesota Department of Health's Guidance on Youth Sports, and must include the required actions identified in the Governor's Executive Orders.
- Schools that choose to offer fall athletics (including Girls Tennis, Boys and Girls Cross Country, Boys and Girls Soccer and Girls Swimming and Diving) may begin practice on Monday, August 17th. For schools that are required by localized metrics to be in a distance learning mode, practices are limited to virtual contact only.
- 20% reduction in weeks of the season
- 30% reduction in the number of competitions
- Limit 1-2 events per week per team
- Maximum of three teams in cross country events
- Interscholastic scrimmages will not be allowed.
- The first week of practice should focus on implementing effective protocols and routines for pre-participation screenings, effective social distancing, compliance with all health recommendations, the establishment of pod limits of 25 or less, and additional actions that mitigate the spread of disease and enhance the safety of students and coaches.
- Athletic programs must follow the identified protocols for students or coaches who have tested positive, are experiencing symptoms consistent with a COVID-19 diagnosis, or have had exposure to an individual who has been diagnosed with COVID-19.
- Competitions held with opponents from other states are required to meet the following:
- Full compliance with all requirements of the MSHSL and MDH
- Opponents from other states may not exceed a distance greater than 75 miles from the Minnesota member school.
Return to Participation for Adapted Soccer will be addressed through collaborative planning with the Minnesota Adapted Athletics Association and the MSHSL. Additionally, Return to Participation for all MSHSL Category II activities will be determined through activity-specific planning and will be in alignment with the Return to Learning Plan provided by MDE.
We will update this article with more news as the MSHSL keeps talking about specific safety rules and parameters for the fall cross country season.