2020-21 Start in Sheldon ISD » Athletic Return On-Campus Plan

Athletic Return On-Campus Plan

Sheldon ISD is excited to have students back on campus participating in the activities that they are passionate about. As we have made plans for their return, the health and safety of our student-athletes and staff is the number one priority.


The following guidelines were compiled with the assistance of the SISD administrative team, licensed athletic trainers, our high school campus coordinators, assistant coordinators, coaches and the guidelines of the University Interscholastic League (UIL). SISD will continue to work closely with the UIL, the State of Texas and Harris County health officials to ensure that timely and appropriate information is guiding our plans and responses to the current public health situation.


We will expect our staff and student-athletes to strictly follow all guidelines to ensure their safety and the safety of others and have plans in place to fully educate all before there is any return to campus. The policies and plans are designed to minimize risk for our athletes, staff and others. It is vital to the health and safety of all concerned that we take responsibility for our personal actions and the responsible implementation of our plan. We are all accountable for each other. 

  • Screening Procedures for Staff and Student-Athletes: Screening Procedures for Staff and Student-Athletes: All staff will be screened prior to their arrival on campus per current SISD expectations. Parents are expected to screen their students prior to sending the students to the campus. Students will stay home if they answer ‘yes’ to any of the screening questions, are experiencing COVID symptoms, or have a test confirmed positive result. Students will be pre-screened prior to their return to campus, and will be screened daily at home prior to arriving on campus per SISD Athletics protocols and procedures. Added precautions and screenings will be implemented by Head Coaches as needed to ensure the risk of spreading the virus is minimized.

  • Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols: It is expected that per Governor Abbott’s executive order (GA-29) and best practices for mitigating the spread of COVID-19, that all students and staff wear face coverings that cover the nose and mouth when not actively participating and/or showering. SISD is requiring all students in grades 3-12 to wear a face covering.  This includes entering and exiting athletic facilities, on the sideline, in the locker room and on the bus. 

  • Social Distancing: Every effort will be made to maintain appropriate social distancing between athletes when not actively participating. Coaches will work to keep athletes and staff members 6 feet away from each other as much as possible. We expect all athletes to limit physical contact with each other before, during and after contests. Do not shake hands, hug, fist bump or high five. This will be closely monitored by our staff. Staff are asked to remain at least 5 yards from students as much as possible during practices and contests. 

  • Hygiene: Hand washing and sanitizing will be emphasized and expected before, during, and after activities by staff and students. 

  • Cleaning and Sanitization: Routine and enhanced cleaning and sanitization protocols will be implemented to clean equipment and workout facilities to minimize the risk to all concerned. The SISD operations team will perform rigorous cleaning procedures daily in support of our activities both during and after the completion of activities. 

  • Supervision-Attention to Detail: Our staff will be resolute in ensuring that all expectations are met in the execution of our plan. We understand the importance of providing a safe environment for all. Locker rooms, meeting rooms and practice/game areas will be supervised closely to ensure that all expectations are being met. 
  • All coaches are expected to thoroughly review all SISD, UIL, and TEA guidelines provided by the SISD Athletics Department.

  • The Campus Athletic Coordinator, Assistant Athletic Coordinator and Head Athletic Trainer will conduct virtual or in-person orientation for all staff members to review all guidelines, expectations, UIL rules and campus specific procedures (including screening), duty stations, entry and exiting procedures, etc. 

  • Middle School male and female coordinators will conduct virtual or in-person orientation for all staff members to review all guidelines, expectations, UIL rules and campus specific procedures (including screening), duty stations, entry and exiting procedures, etc. 
  1. After MS/HS staff orientation of guidelines, all in-season sports will be required to have pre-season meetings with parents to inform them of COVID related protocols and procedures. Student-athletes will engage in a Return-to-School Zoom meeting with their sport-specific head coaches to discuss what the procedures and expectations will be for our campus athletic programs. At a minimum, this presentation will include the following: 
    1. Paperwork and Medical requirements (RankOne)
    2. Screening Procedures-“Stay home” if you have any symptoms and communicate to your head coach and athletic trainer.
    3. Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols
    4. Social Distancing
    5. Hygiene
    6. Cleaning and Sanitization
    7. Attention to Detail
    8. Locker room protocols and procedures
    9. Personal Accountability for actions away from campus in order to promote a healthy environment on campus.
    10. The SISD Athletic Department will provide guidelines and response strategies regarding the Return to School Plan to the community via the SISD website. 
  • Sanitizing supplies will be filled and placed in predetermined locations before the first day of school. The Operations staff will regularly refill with SISD approved alcohol based sanitation products.
  • Trash cans will be placed strategically for paper towels that will be used to disinfect equipment and high touch surfaces.
  • COVID-19 Facility Warning Signs and Posters will be printed, laminated, and posted at appropriate locations. The following links will take you to the signs and posters utilized within our facilities:
    • Prohibited Sign
    • Stop Sign
    • Cough Poster
    • Hands Poster
    • Spread Poster 

  • Social distancing markings will be installed on each rack and throughout the facility.
  • Hand sanitizing stations will be set up throughout the facility for use. 
  • All staff will need to arrive prior to the students’ report time each day to ensure that kids socially distance and follow all protocols and procedures. All campus staff will be responsible for executing their campus-based site plan using SISD/UIL/TEA guidelines.
  • Athletes will self-check reviewing all screening questions prior to arriving at school. 
  • Athletes will stay home if they answered “YES” to any screening questions or if they do not feel well and will be responsible for contacting their head coach/athletic trainer (HS) or athletic coordinator (MS).
  • All students will need to bring their own water, mask/face covering, small towel, appropriate footwear, and hand sanitizer (if possible).
  • Athletes will follow arrival/entry procedures communicated prior to the first day via various means of communication from MS/HS staff. All locker rooms will have designated supervised open and close times prior to the beginning and ending of school and all workout activities.
  • Student athletes will be monitored at all times when in athletic areas to ensure face coverings are being worn and social distancing is being followed.
  • Entry to all locker rooms will be staggered by assignment; staggered entry & exits to locker rooms will be used to best mitigate unnecessary exposure to student athletes before and after school, before and after the athletic period, before and after practices, & before and after games. All athletes and coaches will wear masks during the time they are in the locker room. 
  • Social Distancing: Maintain 6 feet of distance between each other when not actively exercising. This includes lift groups, run groups, and in other common areas.
  • Physical Contact: Avoid physical contact with others. Do not shake hands, hug, fist-bump or high five.
  • Athletes will use hand sanitizer before entering the facility, during workouts, and when exiting every area.
  • Restrooms: Student-athletes are required to wash hands and/or sanitize hands after exiting; trash cans will be placed near doors to encourage student-athletes to open the door with the paper towel used to dry hands.
  • Hydration: Student-athletes will be required to bring their own labeled individual water bottles/jugs. They are prohibited from sharing water bottles. Water can be provided for refill of student-athletes’ containers with specific protocols being followed by athletic trainers to provide refills in the safest manner possible. Students will utilize their own water containers during practices and contests and trainers will provide single use water cups as needed to facilitate necessary game/contest flow. 
  1. All staff will need to complete screening per campus instructions. Staff will stay home if they can answer “YES” to any screening questions or if they do not feel well. Staff will then contact campus administration and athletic training staff if they symptoms related to COVID-19. Staff will use hand sanitizer and wear mask before entering the facility, during workouts, and exiting all areas. Staff will bring their own labeled water bottle. Masks will be worn in all coaches’ offices and meeting areas.
  2. Students will complete screening questions prior to coming on campus. The student will access a link provided through various means by CAC or MS coordinator to answer the screening questions. Students are encouraged to take temperatures prior to arrival at school and report any temperature over 100.3 degrees. Multiple staff members (head coaches & athletic trainers) or MS coordinators will be monitoring the screening information submitted on a Google document prior to athletic periods or workouts. Staff will respond to any “yes” questions by contacting the athletic training staff or by seeking out the student directly. Questions will be visible and posted as well at locker room and athletic area entrances for visual reminders of the process and symptoms. If any issues arise due to a ‘yes’ answer, the student should not arrive on campus for the day, and should contact an athletic trainer/head coach (HS) or middle school athletic coordinator.
  1. It is expected that group and workout sizes are maintained at manageable sizes in order to ensure that all SISD, UIL and TEA are being followed by all participants (athletes/coaches).
  2. Every effort will be made to minimize sustained contact between students to avoid 15 minutes of cumulative exposure time within 6 feet in a day between any two students without masks.
  1. At all times, all athletes and staff, that are not actively exercising, are expected to keep a minimum of 6 feet of distance between each other while wearing masks. It is also suggested that staff maintain a distance of 8 feet from students and other staff. This includes staff with staff, staff with students, and students with students. Social distancing guidelines should be adhered to during all processes, including arrival, screening, departure, post-workout, coaches’ offices, etc. 
  2. Safety or sport-specific reasons are the only acceptable reasons for getting closer than 6 feet. A mask/gaiter covering nose and mouth will be a minimum requirement for those not actively exercising/involved in competitive action. All staff will enforce hand sanitizing to mitigate risk of exposure.
  3. Only 50% of official building capacity in indoor athletic workout and competition areas will be utilized.
  4. Weight rooms: Capacity restrictions call for 50 square feet for each person. We will then take the total square footage, divide by 50, and then multiply by .50 to determine capacity.
  5. Gyms: Capacity restrictions of 50% will be adhered to. The 6-10 rule will always be in effect after 50% capacity is enforced.
  6. Multipurpose (Leggo) Gyms: If any weight equipment at all (bars, med balls, etc.) are being used, staff will sanitize equipment after use and area around the equipment.
  7. Coaching Offices-Coaches will be expected to have 6 ft. of distance between desk/work/meeting/lunch areas. Less than 6 ft. is allowable for cumulative durations of less than 15 minutes if masks are worn.
  8. Meeting Rooms-For all meeting rooms, we will utilize the 50% capacity guideline and require that all participants in the meeting will be spaced 6 ft. from each other with masks being worn.
  9. Indoors or outdoors must maintain UIL/SISD social distancing guidelines when required.
  10. There will be access to locker rooms; however, staff will assign lockers to enforce social distancing protocols. Campus staff will identify restrooms for use and put up signage indicating which areas are off limits and what are the maximum occupants at any one time. Any student that goes into a restroom will need to have a mask on while utilizing the restroom.
  • Workout groups will not be limited in size, however, groups are expected to adhere to UIL/SISD social distancing and mask rules. SISD will expect key principles to be adhered to when planning group activities.
    • Weight Room Capacity is 50% of maximum occupancy
    • Formula: Divide sq ft by 50. Multiply that number by .50.
    • Example: 7,200 sq ft ÷ 50 = 144 x .50 = 72. 72 total athletes and staff members allowed at one time.Competition Gym Capacity is 50% of maximum occupancy 
    • Game/Contest: 50% or under capacity of seat count as determined by athletic department
    • Example: King HS Gym Capacity is 2500, 1250 each side, 1200 tickets will be allowed total and 600 per side will be seating capacity in order to assure the 6-10 rule. King HS Stadium capacity is 10,000; 6,000 on Home side, 4,000 on Visitor side; Ticket sales will be reduced to 2,500 for the Home side and 1,500 for the Visitor side
    • *Visitor side will be utilized for Home band and drill team seating
      The UIL/SISD 6-10 rule will always be implemented, and would therefore impact the number allowed. 

  • Game day announcers will read a pre-written SISD Athletics statement regarding the need for visitors to respect social distancing and face covering guidelines.
  • Workout groups will not be limited in size, however, groups are expected to adhere to UIL/SISD social distancing and mask rules. SISD will expect key principles to be adhered to when planning group activities.
  • Stadium Capacity is 50% of maximum occupancy
    • Game/Contest: 50% or less of seat count as determined by the athletic department.
    • Occupants include all participants, officials, spectators, workers, and anyone within the confines of the stadium.
    • Varsity District Stadium tickets will be sold using a third party ticketing system to enforce social distancing guidelines.
    • Sub-varsity stadiums (HS/MS) tickets will be sold using 50% or under capacity allotment of tickets to account for required maximum occupancy.
    • Sub-varsity stadiums will have game day announcers that will read a pre-written SISD Athletics statement regarding the need for visitors to respect social distancing and face covering guidelines.
  1. A member of the coaching staff will be designated to supervise any areas student-athletes are occupying at all times (locker rooms, weight rooms, training rooms, and meeting areas). This staff member will be responsible for ensuring that all sanitizing, social distancing, and face covering requirements are being met.
  2. All athletic areas will be regularly and frequently cleaned and disinfected including all frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, tables, chairs, lockers, and restrooms. The operations’ department will be cleaning all locker rooms directly after each athletic period utilizing an EPA approved, hospital grade disinfectant.
  3. All kids and coaches will be educated in sanitizing procedures and requirements through pre-messaging as stated earlier and will regularly be reminded of appropriate sanitation protocols. Coaches will assist the operations’ team as needed to assist with the sanitization process. 
  4. Hand sanitizing unit stations and equipment sanitization supplies will be spread throughout workout areas. All kids will sanitize hands prior to starting or ending at a station.
  5. There will be signage throughout our facilities echoing all UIL/TEA/SISD guidelines: No entry, max occupancy, hand washing, social distancing, face coverings, etc.
  6. Laundering of clothes: Athletic clothes and towels can be laundered on site. Staff members handling laundry will be required to wear a mask and gloves. It will be necessary to not overfill a washing machine to allow for maximum cleaning and sanitization.
  7. Weight rooms: Any equipment will be thoroughly disinfected before and after each group use. If a rack group uses a piece of equipment, that equipment must be disinfected before another rack group uses it. All staff and students must also continuously maintain social distancing guidelines. Students will not utilize shared towels and/or issued personal equipment that is used repeatedly to sanitize equipment. Students will utilize single use paper towels. Masks must be worn anytime a student is within 6 feet of another student and not engaged in activity.
  8. Coaches offices and team meeting areas will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized per SISD district standards utilizing alcohol cleaning products (staff/students apply) and EPA approved, hospital grade disinfectant (operations staff members apply).
  9. All locker rooms will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized per SISD district standards utilizing alcohol cleaning products (staff/students apply) and EPA approved, hospital grade disinfectant (operations staff members apply).
  10. Training rooms will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized per SISD district standards utilizing alcohol cleaning  products (staff/students apply) and EPA approved, hospital grade disinfectant (operations staff members apply).
  11. Campus coaches will have rest/water intervals between groups switching sites to allow for coaches working to sanitize frequently touched equipment thoroughly while students are taking a water break, etc. 
  12. The operations’ team will be performing enhanced, deep cleaning each evening after the conclusion of campus activities of all athletic areas. This will include all locker rooms, training rooms, weight rooms, coaches’ offices, etc. This cleaning will include the application of EPA approved, hospital grade disinfectant utilizing misting machines.
  1. All visitors, participants, and staff must enter and exit athletic facilities (wearing face coverings) utilizing the route predetermined, learned during pre-messaging and reinforced through daily practice. All parties will continue to practice social distancing and mask wearing, avoiding any contact.
  2. Students must sanitize their hands and wear masks when they enter and exit an athletic facility.
  3. Parents/guardians will be encouraged to stay in their cars during any on campus drop off and pick-up process. 
  1. All practices will be planned and conducted with social distancing, face covering, supervision, sanitization/hydration breaks, and screening protocol in the forefront of all practice plans.
  2. SISD campus academic departments will continue to provide at-home classes for students that may be virtual learners through the on-line learning platform, throughout the school year.. However, it is expected that athletes attend all required practices designated for mandatory attendance outside of the school day per their head coach.
  3. Inclement weather plans will be developed that could include the cancellation of that day’s activities. A communication system and process will be initiated if a cancellation is necessary.
  4. Players will report to practice understanding the need for social distancing and work to maintain the 6-10 rule as feasible. 
  5. All student-athletes not actively involved in practice will wear a face covering at all times. Student-athletes actively involved will have the option of wearing a face covering.
  6. Hydration and sanitizing breaks will be monitored. No water will be shared between student athletes. 
  7. Unless otherwise noted in sport specific considerations (see below), all student athletes will bring their own water bottle/container. 
  8. Single use water cups are also allowed for hydration purposes.
  9. Coaches and athletes must follow all sanitizing and social distancing guidelines during practice when students are not engaged in an activity.
  10. Transition paths will be clearly marked and monitored, and social distancing will take place as students move from one site to another.
  11. All athletic staff will develop a plan for the “onboarding” of virtual learning student-athletes that are returning to campus each day for practice or strength and conditioning workouts that allow for supervised integration into the learning community.
  12. All equipment will be sanitized post-practice.
  13. All players will not loiter on school grounds or in the locker room post-practice. All areas that typically support athletes waiting to be picked up will be supervised by an athletic staff member to ensure appropriate social distancing and mask compliance. 
  1. Implement health and safety protocols and procedures for buses - i.e., face coverings, hand sanitizers, sanitizing before and after each trip, and social distancing of student-athletes and staff. Travel no more than 2 student athletes per seat and preferably allow for one per seat. Buses should be thoroughly cleaned after each bus trip, focusing on high-touch surfaces such as bus seats, steering wheels, knobs, and door handles. During cleaning, open windows to allow for additional ventilation and air flow.
  2. Distribute and implement SISD protocols and procedures, in conjunction with UIL guidelines, for game day health screening of all spectators, excluding prior screened participants, coaches, etc.
  3. Develop plan to allow for “onboarding” of virtual students returning to campus for game participation
  4. All student athletes will bring their own water bottle/container.
  5. If game day meals are provided, they will be of the box lunch variety.
  6. Designate a cleaned and disinfected area for teams to unload and load buses separate from fans, spectators, and other individuals not essential to the team or group.
  7. Plan for a “Holding Area” for teams waiting to compete.
  8. Implement ticket selling procedures to comply with capacity requirements and that limit personal interaction between spectators and staff.
  9. All coaches, athletes, and gameday workers not actively participating, must wear a face covering, with a possible exception for game announcers.
  10. Assign all team and players assigned areas of field/court to allow for social distancing before, throughout, and after the contest.
  11. Plan to sanitize locker rooms between teams’ use during halftime.
  12. An outdoor relocation plan for bad weather conditions must be in place prior to the contest and discussed with your opponent. This plan must allow for appropriate social distancing of all involved.
  13. Implement pre-game and post-game entry/exit plans for all participants and spectators.
  14. Implement social distancing guidelines for all spectators. (Follow all mandates)
  15. Implement cleaning and sanitization protocols and procedures for press box, concession stands, and any locations used for contests.
  16. Game day concession stands will follow UIL Risk Mitigation guidelines including the removal of flatware, condiments, etc. from counters. These will be available only upon request, and in single use, individually wrapped items.
  17. Any volunteers working concession stands must successfully complete screening protocols prior to arrival on campus in order to work in a concession stand.
  18. Food service counters and areas will be regularly cleaned and disinfected. All areas will be cleaned and disinfected after each patron departs.
  19. The use of plexiglass dividers will be used to mitigate the risk of airborne droplets being transferred between patron and concession stand workers.
  20. Concession stand workers will follow proper food-handling protocols, while wearing PPE.
  21. Concession stand workers will follow Governor Abbott’s Executive Order GA-29 regarding the wearing of face coverings.
  22. Teams will not shake hands after games. Other rituals or practices can be utilized provided that they allow for social distancing. These procedures and practices must be discussed with your opponent prior to the contest.
  1. Any individuals–including teachers, staff, students, or other campus visitors–who themselves either: (a) are lab-confirmed to have COVID-19; or (b) experience the symptoms of COVID-19 (listed below) must stay at home throughout the infection period, and cannot return to campus until the school system screens the individual to determine any of the below conditions for campus re-entry have been met: 
  2. In the case of an individual who was diagnosed with COVID-19, the individual may return to school when all three of the following criteria are met:
    1. at least one day (24 hours) have passed since recovery (resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications);
    2. the individual has improvement in symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath); and
    3. at least ten days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
  3. In the case of an individual who has symptoms that could be COVID-19 and who is not evaluated by a medical professional or tested for COVID-19, such individual is assumed to have COVID-19, and the individual may not return to the campus until the individual has completed the same three-step set of criteria listed above. 
  4. If the individual has symptoms that could be COVID-19 and wants to return to school before completing the above stay at home period, the individual must either (a) obtain a medical professional’s note clearing the individual for return based on an alternative diagnosis or (b) obtain an acute infection test at an approved testing location that comes back negative for COVID-19. 
  5. In addition to the criteria and processes described above, a student who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 must receive clearance from a physician prior to returning to participation in UIL activities. 
  6. Individuals–including students, teachers, staff, or other campus visitors–who have had close contact with someone who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19, as narrowly defined in this document and as determined by the appropriate public health agency, should stay at home through the 14-day incubation period, and should not be allowed on campus.
  7. School systems should screen individuals after the incubation period has concluded, and if the individual did not experience COVID-19 symptoms during that period, the individual can be allowed back on campus. If the individual experienced symptoms, they must stay at home until the conditions outlined above have been met. 
  8. “Close contact” refers to an individual being in “close contact” with another individual who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19. Close contact is determined by an appropriate public health agency. For clarity, close contact is defined as: 
  9. being directly exposed to infectious secretions (e.g., being coughed on while not wearing a mask or face shield); or 
  10. being within 6 feet for a cumulative duration of 15 minutes, while not wearing a mask or face shield; 
 

*Either (1.) or (2.) defines close contact if it occurred during the infectious period of the case, defined as two days prior to symptom onset to 10 days after symptom onset. In the case of asymptomatic individuals who are lab-confirmed with COVID-19, the infectious period is defined as two days prior to the confirming lab test and continuing for 10 days following the confirmed lab test. 

  1. Required Actions if individuals with lab-confirmed cases have been in a school or in an area where UIL activities are being conducted. 
  2. If an individual who has been in areas where UIL activities have been conducted is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19, the school must notify its local health department, in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations, including confidentiality requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). 
  3. Schools must close off areas that are heavily used by the individual with the lab-confirmed case (student, teacher, or staff) until the non-porous surfaces in those areas can be disinfected, unless more than 7 days have already passed since that person was on campus.
  4. Consistent with school notification requirements for other communicable diseases, and consistent with legal confidentiality requirements, schools must notify all teachers, staff, and families of all students in a school if a lab-confirmed COVID-19 case is identified among students, teachers or staff who participate in any UIL activities. If the person who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19 participated in a contest against another school(s), the school must notify other school(s) and sports/contest officials involved in the contest. 
  5. In addition to the processes described above, a student who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 must receive clearance from a physician prior to returning to participation in UIL activities.
  1. Athletic webpage and social media content will be available to all parents/guardians outlining the return to campus plan and safety measures.
  2. Coaches will educate the athletes via Zoom meetings, in person instruction and orientation. Communication plans will be developed by each campus to keep all parents informed of campus procedures, timelines and expectations.
  1. The SISD Athletics administration staff will meet with Campus Athletic Coordinators, Assistant Athletic Coordinators, as well as Middle School Coordinators to review new procedures and protocols. 
  2. Student-athletes will be required to participate in a Zoom meeting with their coach prior to their return to school to be informed of the athletic department ‘Return to School’ requirements and procedures.
  3. During this orientation, student-athletes will review a screening questionnaire and expectations with a football staff member.
  4. All student-athletes will learn how to save the screening questionnaire to their phone for easy access.
  5. All parents/guardians and student-athletes will learn pre and post practice drop off/pick up for practices and game days.
  6. All student-athletes will experience the social distancing expectations and process for the locker room, weight room, training room, practices, and game days before the first day of school
  7. All student-athletes will review hand-sanitizing protocols and expectations, as well as, equipment sanitizing procedures for the locker room, weight room, training room, practices, and game days before the first day of school

Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols 


  • Athletic Period/Practice: Students will wear face covering that completely covers nose and mouth, when not actively exercising. Students are not required to wear a face covering when actively exercising, but will be encouraged to do so if it’s possible.
  • Games: Teams, participants, officials, student groups, spectators, audiences, fans, media, staff, contractors, & volunteers are required to wear face coverings as described in Executive Order GA-29. 

○ In Game: Players should be allowed to wear face coverings during competition if they choose to do so as long as they don’t compromise the safety of any and all participants. 

○ On Sideline: Face Coverings will be in up position fully covering nose and mouth by all athletes, sideline personnel, and coaches. 

○ Press box: Face coverings will be worn by all coaches at all times. 

  • Weekends: All coaches and players will follow all Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols while at school on weekends.

 Social Distancing 


  • Athletic Period/Practices/Game: 

○ Locker room: Due to high participation of sport, lockers will be staggered when assigned and also staggered entry & exits will be used to best mitigate unnecessary exposure to student athletes before and after school, before and after the athletic period, before and after practices, before and after games. Time in the locker room will be limited, emphasizing getting in and out. 

○ Maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times while on the sidelines and on the field of play when possible. 

○ Player equipment should be spaced accordingly to prevent close contact. 

○ No touch rule – players should refrain from high fives and other non-sport related physical contact with teammates, opposing players, coaches, officials, and fans. 

○ Try and limit the number of non-essential personnel who are on the field level throughout practices and contests. 

○ For the coin toss, limit attendees to the referee, umpire and one designated representative from each team.

 ■ Coin toss will take place in the center of the field with designated individuals maintaining social distancing of 6 feet. No handshakes prior to and following the coin toss. 

○ On Sideline: Player box will expand from the 10 to the 10 yard line. Social distancing will be enforced by staged positions of all players during: pre-game, in game, on sidelines, and on bench in game. 

■ Only team members/athletic staff can be in the team box.

■ For the extended team box, a back limit of 6’ from the limit line should be added.

■ Enforcement of the extended team box is the responsibility of each team's game management. 

■ The “ball boys” should maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times during the contest. 

○ Timeouts:

■ Coaches will meet players at the bottom of numbers on the field, players will social distance during timeouts. 

■ Players will sanitize hands during timeouts. 

○ Locker Room: Teams will consider space needed to social distance pre-game, during halftime, and post game. 

○ Halftime: Teams will stagger and coordinate their exit to the locker room and entry back to field. ○ Pressbox: Maximum capacities will be followed and social distancing will be applied to all working in the press box. 

○ End game sportsmanship: Both teams will move to the numbers socially distancing and raise their helmets as an acknowledgement of sportsmanship towards each other. Exits of the field will be staggered and coordinated to the locker room and bus. 

  • Weekends: Coaches and players will follow the same social distancing guidelines that applied during normal school week when on campus during the weekend. 

Cleaning and Sanitization 


  • Equipment: All footballs will be grouped by team level: freshmen, junior varsity, & varsity. They will be sanitized at the end of each practice or game. 
  • Locker rooms: 

○ Any equipment that will be kept in student lockers and/or in these areas should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected each day prior to students accessing these areas. 

○ Players should not share any equipment with others. Players should only use equipment that was assigned to them. 

  • Games: 

○ Before, during and after the contest, players, coaches, game officials, team personnel and game administration officials should wash and sanitize their hands as often as possible. 


○ Game Day Preparation: Balls will be cleaned and sanitized between quarters. Game balls will be grouped in two bags. 1st/3rd quarter balls will be stored in one bag, and 2nd/4th quarter balls will be stored in another bag.

■ The “ball boys” should sanitize hands often during the contest. 

■ The officials will have limited contact with the ball. The players of the offensive team will handle the ball and take it with them to the huddle. The umpire will place a bean bag at the spot where the ball will be snapped. 

○ Sideline time outs: Campus athletic training staff will provide water in disposable cups to athlete

 Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols

  • Athletic Period/Practices/Games: Students will wear a face covering that completely covers the nose and mouth, when not actively exercising. Students are not required to wear a face covering when actively exercising, but will be encouraged to do so if it’s possible. 
  • Matches: Teams, participants, officials, student groups, spectators, audiences, fans, media, staff, contractors, & volunteers are required to wear face coverings as described in Executive Order GA-29. 

○ In Game: Students will wear a face covering that completely covers the nose and mouth, when not actively exercising. Students are not required to wear a face covering when actively exercising, but will be encouraged to do so if it’s possible. 

○ On Sideline: Face coverings must be worn by all team personnel (coaches, managers, players not in the match) while on the bench or not actively participating. 

○ Locker Room: Staff and student-athletes must wear face coverings while inside locker rooms, meeting rooms, training rooms,and other areas where student-athletes may congregate other than shower facilities. 

  • Weekends: All coaches and players will follow all Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols while at school on weekends 
 

Social Distancing 

  • Athletic Period/Practice: 

○ Maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times while on the sidelines and on the court when possible and/or practical. 

○ Consider marking volleyballs for groups to limit exposure 

○ Keep accurate records of those athletes and staff who attend each practice in case contact tracing is needed. 

  • Matches: In support of the guidance to opening up junior high school athletics the NFHS volleyball rules committee created considerations for state associations to consider whether any possible rules could be altered for the 2020 volleyball season. The following outline the considerations the UIL volleyball will make for this next season only: 
 

○ Team Benches (5-4-4b, 9-1-2, 9-1-2 NOTE, 9-3-3b) 

■ Suspend the protocol of teams switching benches between sets. Prior to warm-ups, the home team will select a bench (1-6-1) to be at the entire match, for all matches played on a given night. 

■ Suspend the use of the coin toss to determine serve/receive. The visiting team will serve first in set 1 and alternate first serve for the remaining non-deciding sets. 

■ Limit bench personnel to observe social distancing of 3 feet when practical . 

 

○ Pre-match Conference (1-2-4a; 1-6-2; 1-6-3; 2-1-10; 5-4-1h, k; 5-6-1; 7-1-1; 7-1-1 PENALTIES 1; 9-1a; 12-2-3) 

■ Suspend roster submission at the pre-match conference. Rosters are submitted directly to the officials’ table before the 10-minute mark. 

■ Limit the attendees to the head coach and one captain from each team and the R1 and R2. 

■ Hold the conference at center court with the head coach, one captain and a referee on each side of the net ○ Deciding Set Procedures [1-2-4b, 5-4-4c, 5-5-3b(26), 9-2-3c] 

■ Move the location of the deciding set coin toss to center court with team captains and the second referee maintaining the appropriate social distance of 3 to 6 feet. A coin toss, called by the home team, will decide serve/receive. 

■ Suspend the protocol of teams switching benches before a deciding set. 

 

○ Substitution Procedures (2-1-7, 10-2-1, 10-2-3, 10-2-4) 

■ Maintain social distancing of 3 to 6 feet between the second referee and the player and substitute by encouraging substitutions to occur within the substitution zone closer to the attack line. 

 

○ Pre-match Ceremony 

■ Both teams (starting players and/or entire team) will line up on their respective end lines 

■ The R1 will whistle and motion for teams to advance to the attack line. 

■ The R1 will whistle to release the players to line up in their starting positions 



■ Consideration should be given to 6 minutes for warm up (each team can do whatever they need to prepare during those 6 min. No digging or passing on the opponent’s side of court in order to prevent cross contamination. No shared serving time. 

 

○ During match 

        •  No touch rule – players should refrain from forms of celebration that encourage close contact (high fives, huddles, body slaps, etc…) with teammates, opposing players, coaches, officials, and fans.
 

○ Post-match Ceremony 

■ The R1 will display the end of set signal (signal 21) 

■ Using both open hands with arms extended, the R2 will point toward the attack lines. 

■ The teams will line up on their respective attack lines facing their opponents 

 

○ On Sideline: 

■ Considerations for officials: Down Ref possibly use hand whistles; should consider wearing a face covering 

 

Cleaning and Sanitization 

  • Athletic Period 

○ Considerations should be given to sanitize equipment, i.e., standards, boxes, net, & particularly volleyballs, between drills, group work, and after the period. 

 
  • Practice 

○ Considerations should be given to sanitize equipment, i.e., standards, boxes, net, & particularly volleyballs, between drills, group work, and after the period.

 

  • Matches 

○ Game Day Preparation: 

■ Sanitize equipment(balls, chairs, flags) between matches. 

■ One ball cart per team. 

■ Sanitize game ball in between sets 

 

○ Sideline: 

■ Athletes will have assigned seats. 

■ Athletes may need to stand in order to adhere to social distancing





Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols 

 

  • Athletic Period/Practice/Meets:  Students will wear a face covering that completely  covers the  nose and mouth, when not actively exercising.  Students are ​not​ required to  wear a face covering when actively exercising, but will be encouraged to do so if it’s  possible.    
  • Practice  

○ During Run: Students are ​not​ required to wear a face covering when actively  exercising, but will be encouraged to do so if it’s possible.  

○ Pre-Run/Post-Run: Students will wear a face covering that completely covers the  nose and mouth, when not actively exercising.   

○ Locker Room:  Staff and student-athletes must wear face coverings while inside  locker rooms, meeting rooms, training rooms, and other areas where  student-athletes may congregate other than shower facilities.    

  • Meets  

○ During Run: Students are ​not​ required to wear a face covering when actively  exercising, but will be encouraged to do so if it’s possible.  

○ Pre-Run/Post-Run: Students will wear a face covering that completely covers the  nose and mouth, when not actively exercising. If not wearing a face covering due  to recovery post-race, athletes are expected to be more than 10 feet away from  each other.     

  • Teams, participants, officials, student groups, spectators, fans, media, staff, volunteers  and students ten years of age or older must wear face coverings or face shields upon  entry to an area where UIL activities are being conducted are required to wear face  coverings as described in Executive Order GA-29.    

Social Distancing  


  • Athletic Period: Maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times. 

  

  • Practice  

○ During Run: It will be difficult to monitor, but encourage your athletes not to  run in groups and maintain adequate spacing as they run. Practice protocols  should be put in place to facilitate some form of social distancing.  

Run:Maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times.

○ Locker Room: Maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times.  Due to the size and layout of dressing rooms, as well as, sharing the facilities  with other sports. It is recommended that you work with the other athletic  programs to utilize the entire dressing room area. Supervision and sanitization  is required.    





  • Meets  

○ During Run:  It will be difficult to monitor, but encourage your athletes not to  run in groups and maintain adequate spacing as they run. 

○ Pre-Run/Post-Run: Team camps must follow the social distancing protocols.  Coaches must supervise athletes in order to maintain social distancing of 6 feet  at all times.  

○ Recommend by the UIL that the starting line must have a designated school box  that is a  minimum of 6ft wide and 18ft deep for all members of the team. There  must be a minimum of 6ft between all adjoining school boxes. If individuals are  entered in the race, there must be a box that is a minimum of 2ft wide and 18ft  deep for each individual or team of individuals if fewer than 5 entries from a  school. {For example, a race with 8 teams (12  runners per team) and an additional 14 individual runners will need a starting  line that is at least 280ft wide. A race with just 8 teams of 12 runners will only  need a starting line that is at least 96ft wide.}  

○ Recommend by the UIL that there are designated camp locations for all teams  that are a minimum of ​25 feet apart​ from other team camps. If hosts allow,  buses can be used as a camp location for teams if desired. 


Cleaning and Sanitization

  •  Athletic Period: Any equipment that will be kept in student lockers and/or in these  areas should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected each day prior to students  accessing these areas.     
  • Practice: All athletic areas should be regularly and frequently cleaned and disinfected  including all frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, tables, chairs, lockers,  and restrooms.     
  • Locker Rooms: Hand sanitizing unit stations will be spread throughout Locker Room  areas. All kids will sanitize hands prior to entering and leaving the locker room..    
  • Meets  

○ Meet Preparation: All buses must be sanitized before athletes loading , as well  as, when exiting the bus.  

Mask Wearing/Face Covering Protocols   

  • Athletic Period/Practice/Match: (SAME AS GENERAL PLAN AT ALL TIMES)    

Social Distancing  

  • Athletic Period/Practice/Matches:  

○ Use every second court where practical.  

○ Try to stay at least six feet apart from other players. Do not make physical  contact with them (such as shaking hands or a high five).   

○ Coaches need to designate areas for opposing team entry/exit and seating for  spectators.  

○ When playing doubles, coordinate with your partner to maintain physical  distancing. 

  ○ Maintain social distancing when changing ends of the court   

○ Remain apart from other players when taking a break.    


Cleaning and Sanitization  

  • Athletic Period/Practice/Matches:  

○ Players should sanitize hands and wipe down your equipment, including  racquets and water bottles. ​Players should use their own hand sanitizer  immediately before and after each play session.  

○ Do not share racquets or any other equipment such as wristbands, grips, hats  and towels.  

○ Avoid touching your face after handling a ball, racquet or other equipment.  Wash your hands promptly if you have touched your eyes, nose or mouth.  

○ Leave the court as soon as reasonably possible after practice and matches.  

○ Wash your hands thoroughly or use a hand sanitizer during breaks and after  coming off the court.  

○ All score tenders will be taken off the courts to prevent touching.  

○ If playing doubles do not contact teammates: no hand shakes, high fives ect...   

○ No extra-curricular or social activity should take place. No congregation after  playing.  

○ After the match do not shake hands, move to baseline and acknowledge your  opponent by “clapping on racquet.”   

○ All players should leave the facility immediately after play.   

○ Equipment:   

■ Use new balls and a new grip, if possible.  

■ Replace all balls if someone suspected to have COVID-19 comes in  contact with them. 

■ Consider spraying tennis balls briefly with a disinfectant spray (e.g.,  Lysol or Clorox) at the conclusion of play. Using new balls on a very  regular basis is highly encouraged.  

■ Avoid touching court gates, fences, benches, etc., if you can.  

■ If a ball from another court comes to you, send it back with a kick or  with your racquet.  Avoid using your hands to pick up the balls.   

■ Do not share any equipment; racquets, towels, drinks, hats, ect.. 

■ Use Four Balls or Six Balls:  

  • Open two cans of tennis balls that do not share the same number  on the ball.
  • Take one set of numbered balls and have your playing partner  take a set of balls from the other can. • Proceed with play, making  sure to pick up your set of numbered balls only. Should a ball  with the other number wind up on your side of the court, do not  touch the ball with your hands. Use your racquet head or feet to  advance the ball to the other side of the court.