Jan. 28, 2021: UPDATE on regional winter sports from Warren County

Warren County has announced that no higher-risk indoor sports have approval to begin next week, county-wide. “Warren County’s health leaders concurred with their regional counterparts that the current COVID data do not meet the criteria to allow higher-risk indoor sports to initially go forward, but that the data would be reviewed in the coming days for resumption of these sports should improvement occur.

“In particular, if the Warren County and/or Capital Region rolling 7-day COVID-19 test positivity rate declined to 4% or less, Warren County Health Services would reconsider allowing New York State’s designated higher risk sports such as ice hockey, basketball, volleyball, cheerleading and wrestling to begin. The Warren County rate was 4.6% as of Thursday, while it was 5.3% in the Capital Region.” Read the full details HERE.

Glens Falls will not begin or restart any Winter sports in the 2021 season

(Original post: Jan. 27, 2021)

After consulting with coaches, our district physician, county health officials, and others, Glens Falls City Schools will not be playing any high- or moderate-risk winter sports in the 2021 season.

This means that the Boys Swimming, Bowling, Nordic Skiing, and Alpine Skiing seasons have come to an end, and Basketball, Wrestling, Ice Hockey, and Cheerleading will not begin, regardless of whether Warren County Public Health officials decide to allow winter sports.

This decision is based on: current WCPH and NYSDOH data on positivity rates within our school community; the existence of the new, more contagious UK strain in our county; advice from our school physician; conversations with our coaches and administrators; and conversations with our school board members. Suspending all athletics aligns with the district’s main focus right now: keeping our school buildings open for in-person instruction within the safety guidelines we have established.

A JAMA article published yesterday notes “numerous media reports of COVID-19 outbreaks among US high school athletic teams suggest that contact during both practices and competition, and at social gatherings associated with team sports, increase risk.”

A CDC report published yesterday cited a high school wrestling tournament in Florida that became a superspreader event and led to 79 infections and one death. “An estimated 1,700 in-person school days were lost as a consequence of isolation and quarantine of patients and contacts during this COVID-19 outbreak.”

“We have a long tradition of successful athletic and extracurricular programs, and we want our students and community to understand this decision is based on the realities of our current public health emergency,” said Superintendent Paul Jenkins. “We are still hopeful and look forward to getting back to some of these student-based programs in the spring.”