ALTON - Athletes who are playing in the fall sports season at Alton High School will be allowed only two spectators per participant, and must wear masks and maintain social distancing in rules recently announced by Alton Community Unit School District number 11, in order to fight the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

In addition, all athletes are also required to wear masks and maintain their social distancing as well, along with daily temperature checks and questionnaires that must be filled out daily.

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"This was created to follow IHSA, IDPH and ACUSD number 11 policies," said Alton High athletic director Chris Kusnerick, "so some of these conditions were mandated to us."

When Redbird teams play on the road, the local policies will apply, as the Southwestern Conference couldn't come up with a blanket policy on spectators and other restrictions during conference play.

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In addition to the two spectators per participant rule, parents are required to sign off on the district's COVID-19 athletic participation waiver for Stage Four of the Restore Illinois program and beyond, and high-fives, fist pumps, handshakes and other gestures of the kind will be prohibited. Gatherings of any kind will also be disallowed to maintain social distancing rules, and carpooling will also not be allowed, except for family units.

All athletes must be ready to go in the proper athletic wear, as locker rooms will not be made available. Also, athletes must bring their own water bottle to workouts and games, although coolers and other sources to refill bottles will be made available during Stage Four, the wearing of masks will be mandatory when not participating in practices and games, coaches will be required to wear masks at all times, and athletes must both observe social distancing and wash their hands frequently, including the use of sanitizer or soap and water.

The belongings of all athletes must be kept separated at all times, and after games and workouts, athletes must return home immediately to shower and wash their clothes. Also, if any athlete or coach has tested positive for COVID-19, they must have a release from their doctor in order to resume participation, and daily temperature checks and the completion of questionnaires will be required of all participants. The high school will be posting signage around the campus about their COVID-19 rules, and about the virus itself.

"These policies are enacted to protect the health of our student-athletes competing for the Redbirds this fall," Kusnerick said.

Per the IHSA seasons recently adopted, fall sports will be boys and girls golf, boys and girls cross country, girls tennis and girls swimming and diving.

Read More:

Feb 6, 2022 | Alton High Returns To Normal Sports Attendance Policies On Monday

Mar 18, 2021 | Alton High School A.D. Releases Student-Athlete & Parent Expectations During COVID-19

Jan 6, 2022 | Alton High School Changes Athletic And Activity Spectator Policy Because Of COVID-19

Oct 27, 2020 | Gov. Pritzker, IDPH Announce Winter Safety Guidelines for Recreational Sports Amid Ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic

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Chris Rhodes also contributed to this story

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