The IRFU is cognizant that a safe return to education is the paramount concern for school administrators at present.
As further government guidance is forthcoming in the weeks ahead on the role of physical activity in schools, the IRFU’s Return To Rugby Guidelines For Clubs is a relevant resource for rugby schools considering a return to training.
Should a school wish to adopt these guidelines, they should only do so as part of their wider reopening plans.
It will be up to each school to decide whether to allow their students to go back to rugby training prior to the start of the academic year.
Where schools do wish to return to rugby, the following are required before any resumption of training under the COVID-19 Safety Planning Stage of IRFU guidelines:
- Complete a COVID-19 Health & Safety Plan (inc. Risk Assessment) specific to the schools rugby setting.
- Appoint a COVID-19 Safety Officer and COVID-19 Compliance Officers for each team
- Confirmation from the Principal and Games-master that any activity delivered will be in line with IRFU Return to Rugby Guidelines and Sport Ireland Return to Sport and Physical ActivityGuidelines/Sport NI Framework for Return to Sport.
Speaking to IrishRugby.ie, IRFU Age Grade & Student Manager Eoin Hogan said:
“We are sensitive to the challenges facing schools at present and want to play our part in the safe reintroduction of physical activity in schools, where schools want that to happen.
Clubs have been well served by our ‘no plan, no play’ policy and we feel strongly that the same should apply to minimise risk for our school going rugby players.
The resources available through our Return To Rugby Guidelines are easily transferred into a school setting. The decision to resume rugby as an extra-curricular activity at post-primary level will remain at the discretion of the school body.”