On Monday, Washoe County in Reno, Nevada cancelled all of their out-of-state athletic trips in response to coronavirus outbreak concerns. All district-sponsored out-of-state/international trips planned for academic events have also been dismissed.
The cancellation comes two weeks before the school district’s spring break, which goes from March 14-28.
The statement released by administrators on the school district’s website:
“We have made the difficult decision to cancel all out-of-state and all international district-sponsored student and staff travel including conferences, athletics, and academic-related activities until further notice. Please know that the decision did not come lightly. Currently, in-state and in-district events will continue as scheduled. We will be monitoring the situation closely and informing you on any developments.”
In an effort to best protect students and staff members, school officials have begun collaborating with WCSD Student Health Services, Washoe County Health District, State of Nevada, and federal health officials to try figure out how to properly navigate through a situation of this magnitude.
Cancelled Travel Plans Puts Damper on Team’s Morale
Coaches and team players across Washoe County are feeling the heavy string from the cancellation announcement. For many of these teams, it’s what they look forward to and work toward all season long.
Baseball coach of Galena High School, Beau Walker, was looking forward to a tournament his team was going to be apart of in Anaheim next week. That tournament features over 90 teams from across the country.
We were very upset to hear the news about the district cancelling out of state travel,” Walker said. “We have a lot of money tied up in this trip, and are hoping to be able to recover some of it, but there is no guarantee. Many of our parents have plane tickets and hotel rooms booked, and many are non-refundable.”
Walker said the tournament in Southern California provides an important opportunity for talented baseball players from Northern Nevada to be recognized.
“It is sad because this is a trip that our team, and especially our seniors look forward to each year, and there are a lot of colleges that don’t usually get a chance to see northern Nevada guys that come out and see them in this tournament which gives our kids more opportunities to play at the next level. However, I do understand that the county has to do what they can to protect our students,” Walker continued.
Jon Polson, Damonte Ranch’s baseball coach, echoes the sentiment.
‘I am just so sad for our players and especially our seniors. It is always what the kids look forward to in their season. We have a close-knit group, and travelling always cements that unity.”
Affected High Schools in Washoe County
- Academy of Arts, Careers and Technology
- Coral Academy of Science Charter High School
- Damonte Ranch High School
- Earl Wooster High School
- Edward C. Reed High School
- Galena High School
- Hug High School
- I Can Do Anything Charter High School
- Incline High School
- Innovations High School
- North Valleys High School
- Reno High School
- Robert McQueen High School
- Spanish Springs High School
- Sparks High School
- Truckee Meadows Community College High School
Coronavirus Cases in Washoe County
Currently, there are two confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Washoe County.
The first confirmed case is a male patient in his 50s who was aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship. The second confirmed COVID-19 case in Washoe County is a male in his 30s who had telling symptoms of the virus appear after returning from a trip to Santa Clara, California.
From Washoe County’s official website, they’ve compiled a list of factors that put individuals at higher risk of contracting the virus:
- Travel within the past 14 days to one of the countries identified through CDC’s travel warnings Level 3, and alerts Level 2, which can be found here.
- Close contact with persons suspected, or confirmed, to have COVID-19
- Severe illness requiring hospitalization for a viral respiratory disease that has no other known cause
- If any of these apply to you, call your medical provider, or the Health District at 775-328-2427 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Sunday, or call Washoe 311 (Dial 3-1-1) after hours.
About Washoe County
Washoe County is Nevada’s second-most populous county, with Reno being its largest city. It covers over 6,600 sprawling square miles, borders California and Oregon, and is home to almost half a million residents.