3 Cobb schools continue workouts despite positive COVID-19 tests; Glynn Academy suspends conditioning

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Three Cobb County high schools will continue summer workouts despite positive COVID-19 tests among athletes or coaches in the past week while a second southeast Georgia school has suspended conditioning until July over a positive test.

Health officials in Cobb and Paulding counties have notified McEachern, Pope and Hillgrove that a football player or coach for each of those Cobb programs has tested positive, according to the Marietta Daily Journal. The newspaper reported that the programs are taking precautions and notifying families but not halting the workouts, which are voluntary.

McEachern football Franklin Stephens, contacted on his cellphone Monday, said he was instructed to refer questions about COVID-19 to Cobb County Schools, which could not be reached for comment Monday evening.

Glynn Academy in Brunswick on Sunday became the second southeast Georgia school to shut down summer conditioning temporarily. Glynn Academy football coach Rocky Hidalgo posted on Twitter late Sunday that his team would resume the workouts July 6, after the GHSA’s mandatory dead week.

‘’At this time, we are notifying all people who may have come in contact with this player and asking them to get tested,’’ Hidalgo posted. “Additionally, the football facility will be sanitized over the upcoming days to ensure a safe environment for all of our athletes.’’

Glynn Academy, located in Brunswick near the coast, is about 50 miles southeast of Ludowici, where Long County High last week shut down its summer workouts until July over a player’s positive COVID-19 test.

The Georgia High School Association allowed its member high schools to start voluntary conditioning in all sports June 8. Many metro Atlanta school districts delayed starting to give themselves more time to prepare. While Gwinnett County started back June 8, Fulton and Cobb counties waited until June 15. DeKalb County began Monday.

The GHSA issued guidelines for summer workouts that include limits to group sizes.

The GHSA eased guidelines last week, now allowing groups of 50 to train together, up from the original 20. Sport-specific equipment such as balls is now allowed. Screening of students and coaches, social-distancing and sanitizing rules remain in place.

The GHSA has provided no guidance on dealing with positive COVID-19 testing among students or coaches, leaving that to the school systems. The CDC recommends that persons stay home for 14 days after their last exposure to a person who has tested positive.

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