Travis County Interim Health Authority Dr. Mark Escott has ordered shutting down of all on-campus activities until September 7th.
The delaying of re-opening on-campus events was made by Dr. Escott as Coronavirus cases continue to escalate in Travis County. The shutdown of on-campus activities includes any extracurricular athletic events until schools open up after Labor Day weekend.
#BREAKING: @AusPublicHealth issues emergency order:
-Public/private schools can't do in-person learning until after Sept 7
-Sports + activities can't happen until in-person learning starts
-Schools must develop & submit a plan to local health authority and make it public
— Erin Cargile (@erincargile) July 15, 2020
Travis County shuts down all school extracurricular athletic activities affective immediately until Sept 7.
— T.J. McAloon (@tjmcaloon) July 15, 2020
Dr. Escott said direction and guidance for reopening will be issued before Sept. 7. “The big challenge is maintaining operations when people get sick, especially when faculty and staff get sick as we see every year with influenza,” said Dr. Escott. “Imagine that COVID-19 is twice as contagious as the flu. There would be a large impact on the continuity in individual schools primarily providing in-class education.” (KVUE)
As of now, the UIL has not commented on any of the recent school shutdowns. As earlier Hildalgo County suspended all of their school activities until September 27th, and Fort Bend ISD announced that they were going to open their school year virtually.
Travis County had 657 positive cases on July 13th, bringing its monthly total to 5,211. For the state, July has seen cases skyrocket to over 100,000 with 107,009 positive COVID-19 diagnosis. This forced a number of school districts hands as on May 1st there was 30,342 total cases, June 1s there was 66,081 and now as of July 13th a staggering 273,712 confirmed Coronavirus cases in the state of Texas.
The 2020 UIL High School Football season is slated to celebrate 100 years of high school football with camps opening on August 3rd. There’s still no resolution if the live-streaming/live-broadcasting games on Friday nights will be lifted. There’s no resolution on if fans will be allowed to attend games. And, there’s no resolution on what a season will look like.
The time is ticking on what this upcoming season is going to look like. Schools are starting to push their chips into the middle of the table for this upcoming fall semester. It’s time for the UIL to do the same.