Originally published Aug. 25, 2020 by CBS13 KRCG.

By Lexie Petrovic

Physical Education classes are facing challenges of their own during the pandemic.

As students head back to class, many teachers have been able to spread out desks and chairs to have them social distance. But PE classes often have activities that lead to close interactions between students.

Blair Oaks High School PE teacher Ryan Fick said they have adjusted accordingly and have implemented policies to allow for safe physical activities.

Procedure changes include having students wear masks when social distancing isn't possible, having students take part in activities outdoors, and sanitizing equipment every hour, to name a few.

“It’s recommended that kids get at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day," said Fick. "Because of the importance of your core classes, even at the elementary and middle school level, the amount of PE is starting to dwindle. To be able to offer it at the high school level, not only being active now for their health and well-being but also trying to teach them to stay active after they get out of school.”

Fick said students understand the precautions being taken and are excited to get back to some normalcy.

“We have had several kids who know somebody who has had COVID or its been around long enough now that pretty much everyone knows someone who has had it," he said. "They’re taking the necessary precautions. After being out for so long last spring I think they are excited to be back to some normalcy.”

Fick said students have seemed willing to cooperate with these changes.

“Kids want to participate in their extracurricular activities- sports, band, choir," Fick said. "I think especially after having things canceled in the spring, they know it’s a real possibility that it could happen again so I think they are doing everything they can to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

Fick said the district feels prepared to be flexible in the case of having to move towards virtual learning.

He said they had a test run of that in the spring, where students did activity logs and sent in videos of them taking part in activities.

While it is a lot of trial and error, Fick said they have discussed options and feel prepared to make adjustments if it were to come to that.

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