With New Zealand's schools returning next week school's are preparing for the restart of resuming sports activities. Sport NZ has provided expert advice and requirements to ensure a safe return compliant with public health measures under Alert Level 2.
A 3 phased approach to returning to sport has been generally agreed by NSOs as good practice and will be useful in planning the resumption at school;
Get Ready: Plan for a return to training and playing. Put in place protocols and practices to meet health requirements including hygiene (washing of hands and sanitising of equipment), contact tracing, facility access and physical distancing.
Prepare to Play: Resume training, utilising the appropriate protocols and practices. NSO guidance around this, particularly in reducing the risk of injury for students will be a valuable guide.
Play: Return to play when it is safe to do so ensuring that any public health requirements, particularly for interschool resumption which will involve people from outside your school bubble, are in place.
Schools will be working to operate within MoE guidelines and use sport-specific guidelines to inform safety matters such as recommended prepare to play timeframes to minimise the risk of injury, hygiene and sanitising.
"The ability to get school sport underway again is a great opportunity to contribute to the wellbeing of our students and provide confidence in resuming social contact. It also comes with considerable responsibility to ensure that it is done safely."
“It’s important everyone is patient as this will help to keep New Zealanders safe. We don’t want sport to be the reason we go backwards in alert levels." Peter Miskimmin, CEO, Sport NZ.
"We encourage you to take the time now to ensure your return to sport at school provides confidence and quality experiences for your students is compliant with all requirements and does not pose undue risks. Play it safe."