Dear Niskayuna Families,
We have a need to clarify information about the requirements to participate in interscholastic athletics, particularly regarding vaccination.
As of today, the level of community transmission of COVID-19 in Schenectady County is high. In areas where the level of community transmission is high, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends cancelling high-risk sports unless all participants are vaccinated. The high-risk sports that we are offering this fall are football and volleyball. Based on this guidance from the CDC, students who wish to participate in these two sports must be vaccinated, or in the process of becoming vaccinated, at this time.
In light of this, please note the following:
- Students who participate in football or volleyball while the level of community transmission is high must show their coach proof that they have been vaccinated for COVID-19 or that they are in the process of becoming vaccinated by having received at least one shot. This requirement is in effect for tryouts/practices beginning Monday, Aug. 23.
- The school district recommends COVID-19 vaccinations for all student-athletes and all individuals ages 12 and up.
- COVID-19 vaccinations are widely available. To find a vaccination near you, please visit https://www.vaccines.gov/search/.
- While the district is in an area of high, substantial or moderate community transmission, screening testing will be implemented for all interscholastic sports.
- Similar to protocols in place during the school day, interscholastic athletic participants will wear masks at all times, with the exception of when they are three feet or more apart from others outside.
We are thrilled to be welcoming students back to our gyms and playing fields this fall. We know that interscholastic athletics is an extension of lessons learned in the classroom and an important part of our community. We all hoped this fall’s protocols would be different, but we do see what is outlined above as necessary for us to offer these opportunities to students and do everything we can to keep our students and staff safe.
Thank you for your cooperation and partnership.
Cosimo Tangorra, Jr., Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools