What is the process for submitting a medical exception for a player who cannot wear a mask during play?Please obtain a note from the player’s doctor stating that the player cannot wear a mask during play.  This note should not specify any additional medical information such as the reason for not being able to wear a mask.  Provide a copy of the note to the player’s coach.
What happens if someone contracts COVID-19?  Affected individuals or parents should contact the COVID-19 Safety Officer by e-mail at The Safety Officer will contact the Natick DOH as well as MYSA. The DOH will provide the individual with instructions on what to do.  All parties who have had close contact with the individual will be notified. The name of the affected individual will NOT be disclosed.  All teams and individuals that came into contact with the individual will have soccer activities suspended according to the Mass Quarantine Protocol.
Are masks required at all times?  On the field?  On the sidelines?  Yes, Masks are mandatory at all times.  Players (and coaches) must wear face masks before, during and after their games and practices, including engagement in active play. Spectators are also required to wear masks at all times. (Excludes those with a written medical exemption.) 
I thought the MYSA rules said that players had to be 10 feet distanced in order to take off masks during play?Players must be 6 feet apart. MYSA’s current guidance is: “Face coverings must be worn when a player steps onto the playing field. During play when spacing is greater than 6 feet from another player a “mask break” to catch their breath may be taken. The default expectation is that face coverings will be worn. Players must properly wear their face covering at all times when on the sidelines and in any huddles except when 6 or more feet from another player for a “mask break” to catch their breath, drink or eat. If conditions are so severe as to warrant masks too dangerous to wear, the competition must be delayed, postponed or cancelled.”
Practices are only 75 minutes, with only 15 mins between slots.  I love the idea of pre-setting up the field ahead of time, but we don’t have much time.  Any tips?  And do we need to sanitize equipment on the field as practice ends, or can we do that at home?We are asking coaches to consider ending practice a few minutes early to ensure their equipment can be collected and they can exit the field with enough time to allow the next coach to set up safely.   You do not need to sanitize equipment on the field at the end of practice.  You can sanitize equipment at home. 
If the other team isn’t wearing masks once the game starts, what are we supposed to do? If the opposing coach shrug it off, do we pull the kids from the field?It is BAYS, MYSA and Natick Soccer’s policies that masks (covering mouth and nose) are to be worn at all times, except for brief  “mask breaks” or if a player has a medical exemption. Referees will only be enforcing the rules of the game; they will not be enforcing COVID safety requirements. Referees will check that all players are wearing a mask during the check-in prior to the game commencing. Games will not/should not commence until all players are properly wearing masks or have an exemption. Once the game commences, we expect that the Coaches and COVID team coordinator will monitor the players on the field. If a player or players are not wearing their masks properly, we expect Coaches or COVID team coordinator to enforce compliance. If a team takes no action to address a mask violation (e.g. persistent wearing of mask below the chin), the other team’s Coach or COVID team coordinator should inform them (second warning) that if action is not taken immediately, they will deem the situation unsafe and end the game by removing their players from the field. If no action is taken, the Coach or COVID team coordinator should end the game immediately. Ensure you notify the referee of the reasons the game was ended and the specific jersey numbers of the players in violation. The matter will ultimately be adjudicated by the respective BAYS Division Director, who may in turn contact the referees, Coaches or COVID team coordinator for more information. We recommend you document the situation immediately after the game. In the event that the mask policy violations are confirmed, the team in violation will be assigned a forfeit. 
Do you expect that all other travel teams we play will also be required to wear masks? If not, how do we handle that?Yes. See response above.
With no sharing of equipment during the games, how do we handle goalie gloves?  I was given two pairs of gloves in my coach’s bag.  Maximum of two goalies per game (one for each pair), gloves get cleaned/disinfected between games? In the younger ages where we swap goalies in and out, how do we manage? Do we try to stick to 2 goalies a game?Goalie gloves need to be sanitized in between each use by different players.  You can certainly rotate more than two goalies per game.  Please use the PPE materials in your coaches’ bag to sanitize any equipment during a game.  Players are also welcome to bring their own gloves.  Coaches may wish to consider not using goalie gloves this season if they anticipate having a lot of goal keepers during a game.  
What do we do about goalie jerseys?Goalie jerseys are optional and are not specifically part of the NSC uniform kit.  We would suggest using one pinnie per player.
Is the COVID team coordinator needed during games only?No. A COVID team coordinator who can execute on the outlined responsibilities is needed for games AND practices.  Certain responsibilities may be shared by two individuals (i.e. a parent at a game and an assistant coach during practice) if this approach is more practical. 
Can the players remove masks during fitness drills at practice if at least 6 feet apart?No, masks must be worn during drills and scrimmages.  Mask breaks are permitted. Players may briefly remove the mask to “catch their breath” during play. When spacing between players is greater than 6 ft, athletes may momentarily take a brief (e.g. 5-10 seconds) mask break.
While there are 2 adult spectators per player permitted at games, can coachesh still say that practice is closed, no spectators allowed?  If a parent plans to stick around can we tell them they have to wait in their car?Yes, you can run closed practices and ask parents to drop off and/or wait in their cars.
What can coaches do at practices to support physically distanced activities?Practice plan ideas from the MYSA are here:
Are parents getting email blasts informing them of COVID guidelines?  Eg. No congregating or spectator limits.  Or is everything coming from us coaches?Families have received emails regarding COVID guidelines and we have a Parents Guide on our COVID-19 web page.  Regardless, we encourage you to hold a parents meeting where you reiterate and share safety protocols at the beginning of the season and as frequently as needed.
Are we supplying our own pinnies for each player, or are those coming from the league?  I’m a 3/4 grade coach and they were not in my equipment bag.In general, if pinnies are used they should not ever be shared amongst players during a practice or game. One player, one pinnie, then wash and sanitize before reuse. For our intramural teams, we suggest asking players to wear their uniform jerseys to practice. For travel teams, we recommend you have your players bring 2 different colored shirts (specified by you in advance) to practice and save your pinnies for games where a jersey color conflict exists and you are the home team that needs to change.
Can you expand on the medical exception/exemption list or provide guidance to the list?  If a player is unable to wear a mask due to preexisting condition, they must obtain a note from their doctor stating this exemption and provide it to their coach. Coaches should not enquire as to the reasons why the exemption is needed. Similarly, the medical exemption documentation should not specify the reason why the exemptionis needed.  Coaches should reach out to the Natick Soccer Board with any concerns.
Are spectators required to wear masks even if socially distant?Yes, spectators are required to wear masks at all times, even when socially distanced. Team COVID Safety Officers will be monitoring this and ensuring compliance.
If parents volunteer to prepare individually wrapped and labeled half time snacks for the players, is that permitted?No, similar to MYSA’s equipment rules, there should be no sharing of any food, water or half-time snacks this season.  Players are certainly encouraged to bring their own half time snack.