Wellesley High School has announced the suspension of its winter sports season due to rising COVID-19 cases across the school and within its sports teams.
“After consultation with the Wellesley Public Schools Administration and the Wellesley Health Department regarding the increase of positive Covid cases and in particular the major increase of cases on our athletic teams we have come to the conclusion that we will need to suspend the winter season until further notice. This means no in person practices, games, meets or competitions,” according to a school statement.
Athletic Director John Brown says families were notified of the decision on Wednesday night, and that he hopes the suspension will not last long.
The news, issued during the school’s holiday break, drew attention from local TV news stations, which flocked to the high school in their vans on Thursday.
Last year COVID-19 forced local high schools to split their sports seasons into four instead of three, and teams had to abide by modified rules that included mask wearing and more.
Wellesley Public Schools’ COVID dashboard shows 29 positive cases at the high school over the past two weeks.
Public School teachers and staff can test for COVID-19 before returning to school after the holiday break. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will distribute rapid tests to districts over the New Year’s weekend.
Wellesley Recreation hiatus
Wellesley’s Recreation Department has been communicating with the Health Department, too.
Rec has announced that all of its “programs, activities, and rentals have been postponed for a minimum of two weeks as of Friday, December 31st.” The hope, after reassessing in a couple of weeks, will be to resume activities in the third week of January.
More: Wellesley Health Dept. warns most of us will get COVID-19; schools brace for return from holidays
Judy Barr says
And Wellesley Department of Public Health says the Town doesn’t need a mask mandate? What department in Town is protecting our Public Health??
Joan Minklei says
The real crisis for kids is the mental health crisis they face when school, sports, socializing and life it taken away from them to make adults feel less fearful. The suspension of sports in the 23rd hour during vacation week when families planned around the start of the winter sports season is unforgivable. The tone of the letter suspending the sports is accusatory toward the students and puts the onus on them to not have to “permanently” cancel the season. The illness as it has evolved is now mild, especially for vaccinated and most especially for boosted individuals. We never stopped sports for a virulent cold, flu, and norovirus season— this sets a bad precedent.
Jeff LaCure says
Can you share the letter, please?
YES! Preach Joan! The *hysteria* needs to end. Get vaccinated (if you can), wear a mask (when you can) and time to move on (when you’re ready)… stay healthy everyone!
Joe Wellesley says
It’s time to stop testing for COVID unless symptomatic. The only way we’ll get through this is to stop the panic. Most people don’t even know they’re “sick” unless their tested, so why are we letting this thing control our lives when it’s not a problem. If you’re feeling sick, get tested and stay home. If not, live your life.
Jeff LaCure says
Classical WPS!!! So many issues in this system. More concerned with identity politics than they are about education. More concerned about a cold than the mental health of their students and student-athletes. History will not judge WPS very kindly.
Kids still eating lunch outside in 40 degree weather. More focus on wearing a mask properly than with teaching kids how to read and write. And bullying has completely disappeared in the eyes of the schools administrators. No surprise that Wellesley continues to slip in the state school system rankings. These aren’t serious people capable of solving serious problems.
Teddy Wellesley says
who cares about a glorified cold at this point. Let these kids play before you steal any more of their childhood from them. How dare you rob them of their HS sport days because you, as adults, are afraid of life. Theses decisions are pathetic. Wellesley schools are such a joke.
Wellesley Mom says
COVID is not the only public health crisis. WPS you are choosing to inflict other harm on an entire generation.
Teen depression. Substance abuse. Ease of buying drugs via social media. Suicidal thoughts and actions encouraged on social media. Viral “challenges” that result in destruction of public and private property. Cyberbullying. Childhood obesity.
Sports are an antidote. Don’t take that away from them.
Jim Wellesley says
I would bet any amount of money that during a “normal” flu season more than 29 kids would have it. I don’t recall the School system shutting anything down for the normal flu. Are they going to do the same for the WHS band, art clubs, etc.? This decision is not good for the students and their parents.
I watched the last School Board meeting that was kindly posted via the swellesleyreport maybe 2 months ago. At the beginning of the meeting several parents very politely and professionally expressed their frustrations towards the School Board and David Lussier. I was shocked how no one on the Board really even addressed the parents frustrations. Total arrogance and tone deaf on the School Board! If that’s how they act in a public town meeting, can only imagine how incompetent they are trying to manage the schools.
We have been hearing, speaking to parents and reading all of the frustrations around the Wellesley School systems and tried to keep an open mind. I always scratched my head when a neighbor told me they send/sent their kids to private school who live in this town. We have young children who are not in the school systems yet and will 100% be sending our kids to private school based off of how that School Board did not even address the parents concerns via that meeting! Very eye opening!
They probably don’t care when parents sends kids to private schools who live in Wellesley, as I am sure they think it’s some “rich entitled kid”.. Well maybe they should be embarrassed and understand it’s a reflection on the School Board and David Lussier that parents in Wellesley are a sending their kids to private schools, who live in such a wonderful town.