Portland Public Schools brings back additional COVID-19 safety measures for extracurricular activities

By Elizabeth Miller (OPB)
Jan. 5, 2022 2:37 p.m. Updated: Jan. 5, 2022 8:18 p.m.

Rather than pausing extracurricular activities, some school districts are adding new safety measures as the omicron variant of COVID-19 spreads.

Portland Public Schools has announced additional safety measures for extracurricular activities in order to limit the spread of COVID-19 as cases increase.

Portland’s announcement Tuesday is in response to new state guidelines recommending school districts either pause extracurricular activities or bolster safety protocols for them.


PPS officials are bringing back safety measures from last spring. Those include requiring student-athletes and performers to wear masks at all times. Any spectator above the age of five must show proof of vaccination or a recent negative test result to attend an event.

Concession stands will not be open and overnight travel for games or other activities is not permitted.

PPS’ new measures are in place for the next month, but they remain subject to change.


Other districts across Oregon are continuing with extracurricular activities, including Salem-Keizer and Lake Oswego.

In a letter to the school community, Lake Oswego superintendent Jennifer Schiele said extracurricular activities will continue, with new protocols effective Weds., January 5.

There will be spectator limits for athletic events, and pep bands are not allowed inside Lake Oswego gymnasiums. The district will live stream basketball games, as well as cheer and dance competitions. The district is looking into live streaming swim meets.

“Some events that can be postponed, such as high school dances and performing arts events, are being rescheduled for later this winter,” Schiele said.

PPS, Salem-Keizer, and Lake Oswego all ask that families discuss the risks and choices that come with participating in extracurricular activities.

“We do recognize there is greater risk for students participating in extracurricular activities, including for those who are fully vaccinated,” PPS said in its statement.

“We encourage families to discuss the risk and individual choices to remain safe and the importance of observing all health and safety protocols, such as the proper use of masks.”