Friday, January 14, 2022

MIAA Statement Reiterating Masking Guidelines - 01/13/22

To:         MIAA Membership
From: Dr. Robert Baldwin, Executive Director
Re:         MIAA Masking Guidelines
Date: January 13, 2022

I have learned throughout my career that the only thing worse than a lack of information is a mixed message. Yesterday, the MIAA Basketball Committee voted to recommend to the Association’s Board of Directors that basketball players and officials have the option to not wear masks during play. This recommendation is well within their purview, and in this case, serves as a recommendation only to the Board of Directors.

This memo intends to provide our members with a clear message regarding Mask Wearing Guidelines and what continues to be the intent of this Association as a whole. The protocols that take place within the school day should be consistent with the behaviors that occur in co-curricular activities. That is why the MIAA has been in lockstep with DESE’s masking recommendations.

I attended a meeting yesterday where an esteemed medical doctor said that the current surge is 20 fold higher than the first surge when COVID 19 began. This is not the time to be sending a mixed message regarding masking guidelines to our membership. DESE recently extended its mask requirement for all K-12 public schools in Massachusetts through February 28, 2022, based upon the current Omicron surge. It is the intent of the MIAA to stay the course as well.

I will reiterate guidelines that were communicated on November 23, 2021, and again on December 21, 2021. Student-athletes, coaches, and officials that are indoors shall be masked. Uniform compliance collectively adhered to by local authorities for ALL student-athletes throughout the Commonwealth eliminates mixed messages and continues to be the expectation during this heightened cycle of COVID 19. Proper mask-wearing (nose and mouth fully covered) is the expectation needed for the safety of our students and school communities.
Masking guidelines for school events at off-campus venues adhere to this same guideline as well. It is important during this time that we collectively and consistently continue to enforce proper mask-wearing of coaches and student- athletes at practices and athletic contests.

In closing, I respect and honor the difficulty of local control. However, I felt the need to send a clear and consistent message to our member schools that we will continue to stay the course as we continue to navigate the current winter season.

Shared from Twitter:

MIAA Statement Reiterating Masking Guidelines - 01/13/22
MIAA Statement Reiterating Masking Guidelines - 01/13/22

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