Calgary high school athletes cleared to practise but no inter-school competitions allowed

Fall sports will get underway for Calgary high schools on Monday but activities will be limited to tryouts and practices.

Both of Calgary’s school boards said there will be a focus on cohorts for student-athletes.

In a statement to Global News, the Calgary Board of Education said that “schools will have the opportunity to develop practice cohorts for fall sports.”

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As part of a gradual startup, the CBE will permit tryouts, practices and training, but competitions between students from different schools will not take place for now.

“[This] allows for the health and safety needs of teachers and students to be a focus,” said a spokesperson for the CBE. “Each school has different implications with respect to how they are responding or will be responding to COVID-19.”

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Read more: Calgary school boards hire more teachers with federal funding

The Calgary Catholic School District said it will also allow practices to begin on Monday, with no inter-school competitions at this time.

The Calgary Senior High School Athletic Association said in a statement on its website that it is aware of both school boards’ plans to start practices and that it will be working with school administration to mitigate COVID-19 risks.

“[Principals] will take into consideration and respond to the following variables, which may impact their ability to either offer and/or maintain practice cohorts in specific sports,” it said.

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Those variables include the impact of quarantine for staff and students, community transmission rates, staff availability and the ability to clean and sanitize equipment and the facility.

The CSHSAA said that once practice cohorts are developed, they must adhere to provincial guidelines.

According to the province’s website, cohorts cannot exceed 50 people, including coaches and other staff.

The province also recommends that people limit the number of cohorts they belong to, but does not strictly state that students cannot belong to several cohorts at once.

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