OSAA released information regarding OHA Masking Requirements for Indoor Spaces as well as updates to the OSAA’s Air Quality Guidelines board policy.  Note that this information may change based upon changes to national or state directives.

OHA Masking Requirements for Indoor Spaces

This morning the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) released its newly adopted statewide rule regarding masking requirements in indoor spaces (OAR 333-019-1025).  The rule is effective beginning today, August 13, 2021. 

We encourage you to review the rule in its entirety but here are some specific sections of note.

(4) Individuals, regardless of vaccination status, are required to wear a mask, face covering or face shield when in an indoor space unless the individual:

(d) Is engaged in an activity that makes wearing a mask, face covering or face shield not feasible, such as when actively swimming.

(g) Is practicing or playing a competitive sport at any level.

(h) Is performing, including but not limited to playing music, delivering a speech to an audience, and theater.

This means that masks are not required by the OHA when practicing or playing a competitive sport indoors, such as volleyball.  The OHA rule also does not prohibit a school or school district from applying a more restrictive requirement.  That would be a local school decision.  Schools are encouraged to consult with their legal counsel and/or PACE with any questions regarding liability.

As stated throughout the pandemic, communication with your own school community, opposing schools, and officials’ associations regarding any specific mitigation policies for masks, contact tracing, physical distancing, capacity limits, etc. that your school has in place will be more important than ever. 

The OSAA will continue to seek further clarification on this rule and communicate more information to schools as it becomes known.

OSAA Air Quality Guidelines

In conjunction with the OSAA staff, Dr. Koester and the OSAA’s Sports Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC) have recently been reviewing potential changes to the Air Quality Guidelines board policy.  The changes specifically relate to permitting practices when the AQI is in the orange zone (100-150) provided they are no longer than 90 minutes total for the day, the level of activity is less than a “normal” practice and the practice includes rest periods.  In alignment with OHA’s School Outdoor Activities During Wildfire Events contests are still prohibited when the AQI is over 100.  Amendments to the board policy were adopted by the OSAA Executive Board yesterday, effective immediately.

The OSAA website has been updated and the amended policy can be found here Health and Safety – Air Quality or here Air Quality Guidelines Board Policy.