Reopening of School Campuses
June 3, 2020
As you are aware, Governor Baker allowed access to open spaces for public use as part of the phased approach to reopening. As a result, the school campuses are reopening today. We believe strongly in the need for families and individuals to be outside and enjoy outdoor activities. I do share reminders of the Governor’s directives so that this can occur with both personal and public safety in mind. The items I share below are found in the May 18, 2020 Memorandum from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs Please note that the use of playground equipment is not permitted.
DPH Orders and Guidelines
Face Coverings and Masks: All visitors to parks and open space, as well as those participating in outdoor education programs should comply with COVID-19 Order 31: Order Requiring Face Coverings in Public Places Where Social Distancing is Not Possible. The order requires any person over the age of 2, whether indoors or outdoors, to wear a face covering or mask when they cannot maintain 6 feet of distance between themselves and others, unless they have a medical condition preventing them from doing so (see further guidance here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-state-of-emergency).
Group Size: No groups larger than 10 are allowed to gather: https://www.mass.gov/doc/march- 31-2020-assemblage-guidance/download
Parks and Open Space Guidelines:
- Visitors should always practice social distancing by remaining 6 feet away from others and adhering to all site-specific rules, regulations, and posted signage regarding permitted uses.
- On trails, walker and hikers should move aside and leave room for others to pass, and cyclists and runners should alert other users when approaching and wait for others to step aside before passing.
- After visiting public spaces, users should use wash their hands or use hand sanitizer.
Athletic Fields and Non-Contact Courts (Non-Organized/Permitted Use)
Athletic fields and athletic courts can be utilized only for non-contact sports, with no shared equipment, such as tennis and pickleball. No permits should be issued for group gatherings and users should not engage in pick-up games, organized games or tournaments.
Athletic Fields Guidelines:
- Users should sanitize hands before and after play, not share equipment, and clean and wipe down equipment.
- When engaged in play, users should avoid touching other users’ equipment in separate areas.
- Users waiting to utilize a section or area of the field should wait outside the field of play until previous users have vacated the facility to ensure proper social distancing and prevent accidental contact of other users’ equipment.
- Users should not engage in pick-up games, organized games, or tournaments.
Athletic Courts (Non-Contact) Guidelines:
- Users should sanitize hands before and after play, not share equipment and clean and wipe down equipment, including racquets, balls, and water bottles.
- Users waiting to utilize a court should wait outside the court’s gates/fence until previous users have vacated the facility to ensure proper social distancing and prevent accidental contact of other users’ equipment.
- Users should not engage in pick-up games, organized games, or tournaments