California has officially banned all high school and youth sports indefinitely as new COVID-19 guidelines were released this week.
The new rules don’t allow for any high school or youth athletic competitions, tournaments or events because of the pandemic.
Student-athletes and coaches are not allowed to engage in close contact activities, and training is only allowed with exercises in areas where social distancing can be maintained, according to the new mandates.
Shasta County public health spokeswoman Kerri Schuette told the Record Searchlight that the only way athletic competitions will be allowed "is when the state gives the authority to do so."
As a result of the new rules, athletic committees will not need to create plans for the upcoming season.
"The bottom line is there aren't going to be a lot of athletic sports happening this year," said Shasta County Health Officer Dr. Karen Ramstrom. "There is really no reason for (athletic committees) to submit a plan to us."
Central Valley football coach Aaron Richards told the Searchlight that he’s concerned about students’ wellbeing during the pandemic.
"I got into teaching not just because I love football but because more importantly I wanted to make a positive impact in my community," Richards said. "How can we safely help the students and keep them active and keep them safe? There are people who are way smarter then I am who have told me we can't even do cross country."