Granville County Schools updates mask rules for athletics

·2 min read

Aug. 10—HENDERSON — An increase in COVID-19 cases around the United States due to the Delta variant has forced many school systems to maintain mask and social distancing protocols for athletic events this year.

Granville County Public Schools officials have issued a set of guidelines for student athletes, coaches and parents that they say is intended to promote a safe atmosphere and get as many athletic events in as possible while the region deals with the latest COVID-19 surge.

District Associate Superintendent Stan Winborne on Monday said the guidelines were being "being communicated to our families and student athletes at each school.

Since COVID-19 spreads faster indoors, the district didn't alter its prior regulations for sports like basketball and volleyball. Everyone who attends an indoor practice or game will be required to wear a mask.

The mask mandate carries over for coaches in outdoor sports, but athletes are not required to wear them as long as they are participating in physical exercise. Spectators are being encouraged to wear masks and social distance from anyone who does not reside in their home.

Along with keeping 3 feet of distance between everyone on the bench, coaches are being asked by Granville school officials to avoid close face-to-face communication and to consider having the same group of players work out together.

Other protocols include disinfecting any shared equipment, having an abundance of hand sanitizer available and having coaches provide disposable cups or labeled water bottles for players to use water fountains.

Although about half of the U.S. population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the virus remains a major problem nationwide, with over 168,000 new cases being recorded on Aug. 6 alone.

Fall sports seasons for schools in Granville County like J.F. Webb High School are set to begin next week.

The Granville school board voted last week to require universal indoor masking of students, staff and visitors at the district's schools.

Contact Brandon White at or by phone at 252-436-2840

Contact Brandon White at or by phone at 252-436-2840