Rules regarding spectator attendance at high school sports events during this COVID-19 pandemic can differ from district to district even though Gov. Kim Reynolds has issued guidance, which she updated Jan. 7.

A news release from the governor’s office said. “Spectator limits for sporting and recreational gatherings, including for high school-sponsored events, will be lifted Friday, January 8th, 2021.”

Oelwein will continue to require all spectators in the gymnasium to wear masks and social distance. The district will also continue to tape off sections of the bleachers to promote social distancing. Activities Director Nick Schauf issued a statement on Monday detailing the rules for Oelwein.

“Each individual school district might have different guidelines for their facilities,” he said in a “special note” at the end of the statement. “Coaches or (the) activities director will communicate out to parents what those guidelines are.”

Asked about spectator rules on Monday, Wapsie Valley Activities Director said the district “will be adopting the new public health proclamation.”

The 29-page proclamation can be found at https://governor.iowa.gov.

“Activity spectators are expected to enter through the front of the school (west) and enter through the $5 admission booths,” he also said. “ NICL tickets are no longer required at the door. All Wapsie Valley season passes will be honored and must be presented at the ticket booth.

Spectators entering as groups should ensure social distancing where possible. Masks are required while in the building.

“We strongly encourage fans to watch the live stream online at home if possible to help encourage social distancing in our gym.”

The games can be found on the Wapsie Valley channel on YouTube.com.

Schauf’s statement explained how COVID-19 mitigation is being handled at all Oelwein home events. These are the guidelines:

● All spectators are welcome to attend high school events held in the high school gym.

● Families are required to sit together and physical distancing must be maintained at all times for all indoor events.

● No organized student sections will be allowed.

● Spectators are not allowed to sit on bleachers that have tape on them. This is to help with physical distancing.

● All spectators are required to wear masks at all times while at any indoor activity at Oelwein schools.

● Bowling, the middle school gym, and Sacred Heart gym will continue to have occupancy-based restrictions.

● Eating food will only be allowed in the high school cafeteria.

● All students that are middle school age or younger will need to be with a parent or family member.

● Home and away sections will be clearly marked and communicated to fans, coaches and administration.

“Spectators and family members are asked to remain respectful and compliant with current guidelines at all times when visiting schools and private facilities for events,” Schauf said in the statement. “The public health officials, school administrators and coaches who have developed these strategies continue to do their best and are working diligently to create a safe and healthy environment for all. Spectators not following physical distancing and/or behavioral expectations will be asked to leave the event.

“We continue to feel fortunate to continue to have an opportunity to watch our young people participate in the activities they love this winter thanks to the mitigation strategies and cooperation exhibited by all stakeholders in recent months.

“Let’s continue to be respectful of the guidelines for all schools as we seek to support completion of the current winter sports seasons.”