BREAKING: Illinois High Schools Stopping Sports Seasons, What’s Next?
BREAKING NEWS: Some Illinois High Schools in western Illinois have put their sports seasons on pause due to the virulent outbreak of the covid-19 delta variant in their districts.
Mercer County School District 404 in western Illinois sent out a letter to parents today saying they were pausing all practices and competitions for high school sports “while we implement outbreak protocols” regarding the massive spread of the delta variant within their schools and districts.
“Due to the number of positive cases at Mercer County High School, our football, volleyball, and cheer squads have entered outbreak status,” the letter, written by Superintendent Scott Petrie, said. “Practices and competitions are paused while we implement outbreak protocols involving regular testing of our student athletes and increased monitoring.
“Our greatest concern is for the health and safety of all of our students. Please, if your child exhibits any symptoms of the covid virus, keep them home and have them tested. Additional safety protocols may be necessary if the number of positive cases continues to climb.”
On Monday, new regulations regarding covid mitigations were enacted throughout the state of Illinois, as per a mandate by Gov. JB Pritzker.
Everyone is required to wear a mask indoors in public settings — everywhere from businesses to government buildings to other venues — and to social distance at outdoor events. The mask mandate applies to anyone over the age of two, regardless of vaccination status, echoing the same mask mandate brought back to Chicago two weeks ago, and to Cook County surrounding Chicagoland last week.
All educational system and healthcare system employees will be mandated to get the covid-19 vaccination or submit to regular testing for covid. All higher education employees and students will also be mandated to get the covid-19 vaccine.
In early August, Pritzker announced Illinois students preschool through 12 would be required to wear masks during school and indoor sports and activities, as reported on QuadCities.com. That requirement for kids to wear masks in all schools remains in effect.
More mitigations could be on the way if numbers do not improve, Pritzker said.
For ongoing coverage of this issue, continue to check in daily with your free, fact-based local alternative media, QuadCities.com.