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PC Band, cheerleaders to be participants

By DAVID GRAVELY

editor@southwesttimes.com

 

Pulaski County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Kevin Siers announced Monday that cheerleaders and members of the band will count as participants instead of spectators at upcoming Season 2 sporting events.

 

“Pulaski County Public Schools has worked out a plan with the New River Health Department and the Virginia High School League to count cheerleaders and band members as participants/players for football games this year,” Dr. Siers said in a release Monday. “Current guidelines under the Governor’s executive order #72 allow for there to be two spectators per participant as long as the outdoor venue remains below 30% capacity.”

 

Siers says that Pulaski County is leading the way on this issue, as the school system has been a leader in many issues throughout most of the COVID-19 time frame. Pulaski County Public Schools have provided more face-to-face instructional time for their students than any of the surrounding school systems. PCPS also returned to athletic competition as soon as possible, allowing students the chance to compete against any schools that willing to play. The Cougar basketball team came up just short in a five overtime thriller against Halifax County last week, just short of making the Region 4D championship game. The Lady Cougars won the Region 4D Championship Sunday against Amherst County. The Cougar and Lady Cougar indoor track and field team and wrestling team will both be sending individual competitors to the state meets in the their sports. The Cougar swim team also recently wrapped up a successful season.

 

“To the best of my knowledge, we are the only school division in our region that has decided to take this approach and one of only three in the state (although I do expect others to follow suit),” Siers said of having cheer and band as participants. “Mitigation strategies will remain in place such as social distancing between people who do not reside in the same home, mask requirements and health screenings upon entering a facility.”

 

Currently, any fans or individuals working high school, middle school or rec league games at Pulaski County venues are only allowed to enter after having a temperature check and answering a series of questions pertaining to exposure to the virus. Social distancing is required and hand sanitizer is available at all venues.

 

The hope is that eventually all schools on the Pulaski County schedule will be willing to utilize the same rules, allowing more family members and fans to be at and enjoy the games.

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