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HIGH SCHOOLS

MIAA mandates masks for winter indoor athletes, coaches, officials, staff, and spectators

Per the MIAA's mandate, Boston Latin senior Emelia O'Gilvie, her teammates, and opponents will once again be donning masks on the court this season, at least until mid-January.
Per the MIAA's mandate, Boston Latin senior Emelia O'Gilvie, her teammates, and opponents will once again be donning masks on the court this season, at least until mid-January.Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

Masks will continue to be required for all participants at indoor high school events and practices when the MIAA winter season begins Monday.

In an email to all member schools Tuesday afternoon, MIAA executive director Bob Baldwin wrote that the guidelines for MIAA indoor sports will remain the same as the fall, and are consistent with those set by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Baldwin said the guidelines would be the same for practices and events held on school grounds as well as other venues — which would include independently-managed hockey rinks, college venues, and the Reggie Lewis Center, among others.

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The guidelines apply to high school athletes, coaches and school staff, officials and spectators.

“These are minimum required state safety standards that remain consistent with the practices that take place during the school day,” Baldwin wrote.

“While masking guidelines may vary at off-campus facilities and venues, please treat practices and competitions as school events and adhere to the (state) guideline. Further, be respectful to the policies and expectations set forth in school districts and local communities and continue the practice of communicating with member schools that may or may not have reached the 80 percent vaccination threshold.”

Baldwin noted that DESE has set Jan. 15, 2022 as the next date that it will reassess the current statewide masking guidance.

“Through our work with state officials, and monitoring vaccination rates and COVID rates,” Baldwin wrote, “we will take into consideration MIAA committee votes and push for a transition to unmasking during athletic competition within the winter season.”


Jim Clark can be reached at jim.clark@globe.com.