The Coast News Group
Due to concerns over coronavirus pandemic, the LPGA Kia Classic golf tournament has been rescheduled. File photo
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School district tackles coronavirus; Kia Classic, Carlsbad 5K rescheduled

CARLSBAD — Widespread fears over COVID-19, known as coronavirus, have virtually paralyzed local communities across the country.

In the U.S., nearly all major sporting events have been canceled, music festivals, large gatherings and school districts have put on major restrictions. School districts are instituting at-home policies or canceling school altogether until the pandemic subsides.

On March 11, the Carlsbad Unified School District received word from officials from the California Department of Public Health on new guidance regarding the outbreak, according to an announcement from Superintendent Dr. Ben Churchill on the district’s website.

The district is not canceling classes or requiring at-home learning. Other new policies include canceling gatherings of 250 or more people and small gatherings in venues that don’t allow for “social distancing” of at least six feet per person.

These restrictions will remain in place until the end of March. Music performances will not be held, along with kindergarten events on March 12 and 13.

“We will determine at a future date whether or not any of the suspended events can be rescheduled,” Churchill said in the statement. “We will also determine at a future date whether or not we will extend this guidance into the month of April.”

District officials had a conference call on March 12 with public health officials and the County Office of Education to discuss CIF sports. The district will update parents, students and the public regarding athletic practices and competitions.

“We anticipate canceling practices and games, and will advise as soon as possible,” Churchill added.

He said principals are being directed to suspend all non-essential meetings or gatherings such as PTA meetings, class performances and more.

Additionally, the district implemented visitor and volunteer restrictions out of “caution.” This includes volunteers and parents entering the campus for non-essential business.

Other events affected:

The organizers for the Carlsbad 5000 and the LPGA Kia Classic announced March 12 they will reschedule their respective events.

The Carlsbad 5000 is a 5K distance running event through the streets of Carlsbad and was scheduled for March 21-22. However, due to the announcement from Gov. Gavin Newsom and state public health officials on March 11, race organizers decided to push the race until Sept. 19-20, according to a press release from race organizers.

For those who have registered for the race, those able to run in September can do so with additional cost or steps to re-register.

For those unable to run in September, the race has two options. First, runners can participate in a virtual race; or defer entry until next year when the race is scheduled for April 10-11, 2021.

As for the Kia Classic, the annual women’s professional golf tournament also postponed its event at the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort from March 26-29, also heeding the recommendations of state health officials, according to a statement from Kia Classic and LPGA.

Also, the LPGA postponed two other tournaments, the Volvik Founders Cup in Phoenix on March 19-22 and the ANA Inspiration, the tour’s first scheduled major tournament, in Rancho Mirage.

“This is a difficult situation and as we navigate these uncertain times, we appreciate the support of all those involved with the LPGA. I am fully committed to rescheduling these important events on our 2020 schedule, especially our first major, the ANA Inspiration,” said LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan. “Our thoughts are with all of those around the world affected by this virus. And on a personal level, it pains me to see the impact of this health crisis on our athletes, our sponsors and our fans. That said, I know keeping our LPGA family safe, and all those who follow us safe has to be my top priority.

We will continue to monitor this rapidly evolving situation with our global health partners and are planning for different scenarios for future LPGA Tour events should they be necessary.”