Return to Play Protocols

Click here to download the EYSC COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Ephrata Youth Soccer Club COVID-19 Safety Plan

This Plan covers all Ephrata Youth Soccer Club, participants, including but not limited to; spectators, players, coaches, referees, managers, and Board Members with regards to all programs including but not limited to; Soccer Tots, Intramural Program, Recreational Program, Travel Program.

In developing this Plan Ephrata Youth Soccer Club has and will continue to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”), Mandates from The State of Pennsylvania, and Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association (“EPYSA”) recommended guidelines to help protect players, coaches, and spectators from the spread of COVID-19. We are and will continue to require all Ephrata Youth Soccer Club affiliated participants and spectators to comply with EPYSA and the CDC’s updated guidelines, along with applicable government requirements and executive orders.  Additionally, Ephrata Youth Soccer Club will honor rules set for by our local governing leagues, Central Penn Youth Soccer League “CPYSL” and Lancaster Area Recreational Soccer “LARS”.

According to the CDC, COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly through close contact from person-to-person. Some people without symptoms may be able to spread the virus. We are still learning about how the virus spreads and the severity of illness it causes.  For more information, please see the CDC website:

According to the CDC, here are steps you can take to protect yourself & others:

  • Know how it spreads
  • Wash your hands often
  • Avoid Close Contact
  • Cover your mouth & nose with a mask when around others
  • Cover Coughs and sneezes
  • Clean and disinfect
  • Monitor Your Health Daily

For more information please see the CDC website:

In the event of a report of potential or actual infection is needed, it is critical that any participants; spectators, players, coaches, referees, managers and Board Members promptly notify their respective program Coordinator immediately, if any of the following are true:

  • Player or Coach has been tested & confirmed COVID-19 infection.
  • Player or Coach is symptomatic and recommended to isolate (by healthcare provider or public health official).
  • Player or Coach has had significant exposure to person or persons confirmed to have contracted COVID-19.
  • Player or Coach has recently traveled to or through any other country.
  • Player or Coach has traveled outside the state of PA (per PA mandate said individual must Quarantine for 14 days or have a negative Covid-19 test result).
  • Player or Coach lives in the same household with a person or persons who have been ordered to quarantine by a healthcare provider.
  • If a Player or Coach feels ill.
  • If a Player or Coach records a temperature of 100.4°F or greater.
  • Outside of season 
    • If a player/coach has contact with a Covid-19 positive person within the first two weeks before practice starts, they must quarantine until two weeks have elapsed. Return to the team will be up to the club’s discretion.
    • If a player/coach falls ill within a week of the season ending, parents should contact the club Covid-19 contact.

In the event of a reported infection, or discovery of an infection Ephrata Youth Soccer Club must ensure the following occurs:

  • A temporary suspension of general soccer activity associate with the team where exposure or positive results occurred. 
  • Conduct deep cleaning of equipment associated with the team in question.
  • Player and Coaches who are ill with a fever or acute respiratory symptoms do not return to the field of play until complete recovery as certified by a medical professional affirming their clearance to participate.

Ephrata Youth Soccer Club will notify all individuals to the best of our ability who had contact or were potentially exposed to the individual who tested positive with COVID-19 (Contact Tracing).  This includes spectators, players, coaches, referees from Ephrata Youth Soccer Club teams as well as opposing teams.

Individual privacy WILL be maintained!  To maintain confidentiality a new email, has been established to track reports of infection as well as other related emails so Club representatives can notify participants NOT coaches.

For Coaches or Players That Think or Know They Had Covid-19 and Had Symptoms

  • You can be around others after:
    • 10 days since symptoms first appeared and
    • 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and
    • Other symptoms of Covid-19 are improving (loss of taste and smell may persist for weeks or months after recovery and need not delay the end of isolation).

For Coaches and Players That Have Tested Positive for Covid-19 But Had No Symptoms:

If you continue to have no symptoms, you can be with others after 10 days have passed since you had a positive viral test for Covid-19. 

For Coaches and Players that Were Severely Ill With Covid-19 or Have a Weakened Immune System:

People who are severely ill with Covid-19 may need to stay home longer than 10 days and up to 20 days after the symptoms first appeared.  Speak with your healthcare provider for more information.  Your healthcare provider will let you know if you can resume being around other people.

For Coaches and Players Who Has Been Exposed to a Person with Covid-19

  • Anyone who has had close contact with someone with Covid-19 should stay home for 14 days after their last exposure to that person.
  • Anyone who has had close contact with someone with Covid-19 and who meets the following criteria does NOT need to stay home:
    • Has had Covid-19 within the previous 3 months and
    • Has fully recovered and
    • Remains without Covid-19 symptoms ( i.e., cough, shortness of breath).
  • This applies to only close contact, individuals with indirect contact do not need to quarantine if said individual is not exhibiting any symptoms, i.e.:
    • Three individuals from a family are involved in the Ephrata Youth Soccer Program, a parent and 2 children.  If one individual has a close contact exposure this individual must quarantine, the other 2 do not if none of the individuals are exhibiting symptoms.  If any ofthe 3 have symptoms, all 3 individuals must quarantine from the league.

For more information visit the CDC at:

Please Note: that this policy follows the Ephrata School District, with regards to participation, based on their protocols of how direct and indirect contact students are treated, at the time this Policy is written.  Any changes to the school’s policy will be adopted by the Ephrata Youth Soccer Club Board and will amend this policy and all parties; players, coaches and referees will be notified via email.

Parent Covid-19 Plan Responsibilities:

  • Refrain from carpooling unless necessary, players are encouraged to ride to the sporting event with persons living in their same household.
  • Only parents/guardians may inform the coach/Club of an illness or exposure, as reporting should be done via the email, 
  • If a player has contact with a Covid-19 positive person within the first two weeks before practice starts, they must quarantine until two weeks have elapsed. Return to the team will be up to the club’s discretion.
  • If a player falls ill within a week of the season ending, parents should notify the Club, 
  • If a player’s family member should test positive for COVID-19 positive, the club contact should be informed immediately, player should be quarantined for 14 days at a minimum. The Player will need to be cleared by a medical professional to return to Play.
  • Players are to have their temperatures checked by parent/guardian 30 minutes prior to all Club events and if a player has a temperature above 100.4, parents need to inform coach immediately that the player will be absent; the parent should also notify the Club, . If the team has had contact with the sick player, the team must suspend activity until more information is provided by the Club.
  • Spectators are NOT permitted at practices, but may stay at the practice in their vehicle, or away from the practice area wearing a mask & practicing social distancing from other people.
  • Players are only allowed to go onto the field once the coach arrives on the field to make sure players follow protocol; please keep your player with you, at drop off, and please depart as quickly as possible following events.  This will allow for turnover of the field when applicable.
  • Athletes, coaches, staff, and families are to refrain from greeting others with physical contact (i.e., handshakes, hugs).
  • Players are to be dropped off/picked up at the parking lot wearing a mask.
  • Players may bring their own soccer ball to practice and will be encouraged to use this for individual drills while properly sanitized Ephrata Youth Soccer Club equipment will be used for team drills.
  • Hydration is critical in soccer thus each player must bring their own water bottle to practice and matches; no team water refill will be permitted and there will be no sharing of water bottles.
  • Snacks should not be sent to practice or matches and there will be no team snacks this season.

Spectators COVID-19 Plan Responsibilities:

  • All spectators are to be wearing a mask when they exit their cars until they reenter their car. Face shields are acceptable if heat should be an issue.
  • Spectators are not permitted to assist coaches, be in the bench area, or go out onto the field at any time including if a player is injured.
  • There is a new seating arrangement for the Fall Season.  Home club will be on one side of the field with their spectators.   The other side of the field will be for the away team with their spectators. The half-way mark will divide the team from the spectators.
  • Team will be stationed close to the goal area to allow for sufficient space away from spectators at the half-way mark. It is strongly requested spectators do not engage the coach or the players. Spectators are urged to resist temptation to “help the coach” coach because you will be on the same side of the field.
  • To allow for appropriate spacing between families, the league is limiting 2 spectators per player be allowed to sit at the sideline.  Spectators are to sit 6’ apart from next family and back 4’ from the sideline.  Additional spectators are to sit in the next row 6’ back.  It is recommended you sit staggered to allow for optimal viewing. 
  • If for health reasons a spectator cannot safely wear a mask, they are not permitted at the sideline.  They must sit in a row behind all other rows sufficiently distanced from other spectators for their safety.
  • Extended family members of players may come to the games, share these Spectator Protocols so there is not confusion on game day and coaches can focus on the kids.
  • Spectators are not to touch any ball that goes out of bounds, let a player or coach retrieve it.
  • Spectators must expediently leave the field directly after the game concludes to minimize cross traffic with the next game. 
  • Parents are asked to not engage another parent about following protocols. If a protocol is not being adhered to, rather than creating a distraction, it is recommended you move to a safe distance from them and report your concerns to the Club, .

Ephrata Youth Soccer Club believes this plan meets the requirements for a safe return to play for the players and families.  This Plan has been drafted with consideration of the four (4) stages of return to play which is detailed on the EPYSA website:

Allowing a player to participate in youth soccer during this time is the sole discretion of the parent/guardian and the parent/guardian is both understanding and assuming the potential risk involved with returning and participating in a youth sports during the COVID-19 Pandemic.  The parent/guardian has the discretion and right to keep their player from soccer activities as they see fit.

It is also the responsibility of the parents/guardians to help protect others and keep their player(s) home and reporting to the club, if they believe they are sick or have been exposed to someone who is sick.  By following these guidelines and accepting responsibility where it is needed, we as a soccer community are believe we are able to provide a safe environment for our players to safely return to play.