Woodland Hills halts sports workouts to re-evaluate covid-19 guidelines

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Wednesday, July 1, 2020 | 3:44 PM


Woodland Hills was the first WPIAL school to resume summer workouts, but the Wolverines halted those sessions this week to re-evaluate their covid-19 guidelines.

The shutdown is temporary, said athletic director Ron Coursey, who expected teams to resume workouts within a week or two. He wanted to dispel rumors that Woodland Hills was hit by the virus.

“We have no covid cases. We have no suspected covid cases,” Coursey said. “We have nobody who’s sick. We have no issues whatsoever. Due to the spikes within the county, we wanted to revise some of the language to our health and safety plan.”

The hiatus started Monday and included all sports, not only football.

Every school in the state was required to create a detailed list of return-to-play guidelines and have that plan approved by the school board. The Woodland Hills football team resumed workouts June 15 with guidelines in place, but school administrators decided this week to re-evaluate them.

In particular, they wanted to establish isolation protocols, if covid-19 exposure occurs. They also wanted to clarify some dos and don’ts in the guidelines.

“We want to make sure everybody is on the same page,” Coursey said.

Coursey said the decision to pause the workouts was made collectively with Woodland Hills’ superintendent and school board president. The board next meets July 15, but Coursey was optimistic that updated guidelines might be approved before then.

“The kids are a little frustrated because they were rockin’ and rollin’, but they’ve got to understand it’s a big picture issue here,” Coursey said. “We want to make sure we’re doing our due diligence and keeping the kids as safe as possible.”

A key question the administrators wanted to address was: What should be done if an athlete starts to exhibit symptoms during a workout?

“We wanted to make sure we have protocols in place if a scenario such as that occurs,” Coursey said. “That way if something does happen, everybody knows what the steps are and what we’re going to do. There’s nothing left up to interpretation.”

Chris Harlan is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Chris by email at charlan@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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