As the district is in the midst of our temporary remote learning, USD 456 would like to thank our students, parents, staff and other stakeholders for their efforts in making remote learning as much of a success as possible. We understand this has not been an easy adjustment, but we do feel it has been a necessary one in regards to the health of our community and the effectiveness of our learning. We are ready to be back in the classroom on December 14th and we are sure you are too. To be clear, while we are still in the process of evaluating the varying instances that will determine the ability to conduct our regular school schedule, we do believe that date will be as scheduled, on December 14th. In planning to do so, it has brought about an unexpected issue within our planning, as detailed below.
With the move to temporary remote learning, the resulting cancellation of extra-curricular activities, and combined with the new winter moratorium instituted by KSHSAA, USD 456 has been scrambling to reschedule basketball competition dates for our JH and HS students. In rescheduling those events, it has become readily apparent that unless our teams fulfill the games the week of December 14th, those teams will lose a significant portion of their seasons due to a lack of available dates. Being that school is scheduled to resume in-person learning the week of December 14th, extra-curricular activities would naturally resume at the same time. However, in order to fulfill the games scheduled that week, participants do require time to condition to safely participate.
Given that the district has now gained the availability to test individuals for COVID-19, along with emphasizing that teams can eliminate the requirement of quarantine in instances of close contact with a positive case through the use of selective masking, and the gathering of individuals will be with a select but regular cohort, permission has been granted for JH and HS basketball teams to resume practice December 7 in order to prepare for coming competition dates.
Below is information for parents in regards to how practices will resume. Otherwise, we are absolutely looking forward to December 14th so we can resume the remainder of in-class learning for the semester. Thank you for your efforts and your understanding during this time of trial and error, decision making and revision.
- As per the schedule, JH Girls will be in the Big Gym, JH Boys will be in the Little Gym, HS Boys will be at Quenemo, and the HS Girls will have the late practice in the Big Gym. Practices are set for a 3pm start time. Late practice time is subject to the coach. There will be no transportation for practices, players will be responsible for arranging transportation and arriving at practice sites on time.
- COVID-19 testing will be conducted for all players Monday, December 7. Teams will report to their respective gyms at 2:30pm for testing. The HS girls can arrive at the HS commons at 3:15pm for testing. Team-wide testing will only occur on this day, but individual testing may occur on a needed basis. If parents do not wish for their player to be tested, please contact the school by phone.
- Players will need to be symptom checked by their coach before each practice during the week of December 7. Associated symptoms are listed on the district Covid-19 plan. If a player exhibits a symptom not previously identified, the player should be referred for testing and test negative before resuming practice.
- Players will continue to be fully masked during non-practice times, but will need to be masked to some degree during the course of practice. Masking needs to occur to the extent there is not a resulting quarantine of the team if a player ends up testing positive. Quarantine occurs when individuals are within 6 ft of a positive for more than 15 minutes cumulatively and are unmasked during the contact. Coaches have the discretion on how to meet this standard. Athletic masks will be provided to each player.