Berkeley High Suspends Sports Tryouts After Positive COVID-19 Tests

Three basketball players contract the virus, prompting quarantines, temporary shutdown

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Berkeley High School is suspending all sports tryouts for at least 48 hours from Monday evening after three basketball players tested positive for COVID-19 over the weekend, according to the school district.

Officials with Berkeley Public Schools confirmed Monday that masks were not worn by "most students" during basketball drills at two outdoor practices and one indoor workout last week, according to a district news release. The district also found out about nonsanctioned workouts that involved some Berkeley High players at an indoor gym without masks last week.

"What happened during the basketball tryouts is not in keeping with the guidance from our Athletic Directors, who follow the guidance from both the California Department of Public Health and California Interscholastic Federation, including that face coverings are to be 'worn by participants during practice, conditioning and during competition, even during heavy exertion as tolerated,'" the release stated.

The first positive test was reported Friday, the second one was reported Sunday, and the third was reported Monday, officials said.

As a result, all players who attended practices last week were placed on a 10-day quarantine, and the district said it followed all notification and contact tracing protocols with each of the players who tested positive.

The suspended tryouts include the following indoor and outdoor sports: badminton, soccer, lacrosse, water polo, basketball, wrestling and volleyball.

The district also said a positive case was reported at Sylvia Mendez Elementary School on Friday and another was reported at Rosa Parks Elementary School on Monday. In both cases, notification and quarantine protocols are being followed.

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