Wrestlers, runners, and other high school athletes have been traveling to competitions this year with Covid protocols in place. That’s likely to be the case this fall too.

In a report to the school board, Petersburg’s Activities Director Jaime Cabral said student travel will be different in the fall like it has been this spring but a lot is scheduled to happen anyway.

“We’ve made our schedules just in case so we wanted to make sure we had dates and everything put up,” Cabral said. “So we have scheduled honor music already for the fall. We have scheduled 2022 Art Fest, we have schedule 2022 Music Fest. It’s on the calendar so if you need information about when those are, they’re up there. When is region basketball, it’s on there, state basketball, all that stuff…we’re looking at calendars in April 2022 already.”

The details of funding the student travel are still unknown. Most years students fundraise for their travel money. Students who go to state competition, for example, pay for all of their own expenses. But that’s been different this year.

“We haven’t been able to fundraise this year because we don’t want to hit our community up when the economy hasn’t been that good,” he said.

This year students have been staying in hotels instead of housing with other families, which has made it more expensive for some trips. But Cabral says they’ve made it work by moving the district’s activities funds around.

“Some of our activities that didn’t happen, some of that money has gotten thrown over into some of the activities,” Cabral said. “Budget-wise we’re doing good.”

State wrestling was May 21-22 at Chugiak High School and state track is May 28-29 at Dimond High School. Because of the pandemic, the Alaska School Activities Association decided to separate the wrestling leagues into two locations. The larger teams in Division 1 will be at Bartlett High School. A limited number of spectators will be allowed.

For state track, they don’t anticipate spectators because of the large number of participants.

Cabral says Petersburg’s COVID mitigation procedures for student travel have been working.  State wrestlers are required to take Covid tests to participate. But Petersburg tests its athletes twice a week anyway.

“If we do not come with our test sign off form for our administration they will not let our wrestlers wrestle,” he said. “So, wrestling is the only [sport] requiring testing. We’re going to continue to do it because it helps our school stay in session plus we have graduation coming up and we just don’t want to lose out on all those other activities that we have during May.”

Going forward with a full activities schedule for the fall, Cabral says the school district will have to be selective as to what activities and events the students can participate if Covid mitigation measures are still in place.