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Dear Upper School Parents and Guardians,
As we continue to fine tune plans for the 2021-22 academic year, we would like to provide you with some information regarding the Physical Education and Athletics program. Please note, specific COVID-19 health policies and protocols related to Physical Education and Athletics will be shared in the School’s reopening update scheduled for later this month.
As an independent college preparatory school, Rye Country Day School considers the Physical Education and Athletics program to be an important component of the development of every student. Students in Grades 9 – 12 are required to take Physical Education or participate in an interscholastic sport in the fall, winter, and spring seasons.


Preseason 2021
Preseason for all fall sports (Football, Soccer, Cross Country, and Field Hockey) will begin on Monday, August 23. Preseason provides student-athletes with practice time to progress both individually and as a team, which results in a great advantage for the season. Attendance for preseason is mandatory for students hoping to be considered for a varsity team and for all returning varsity players. Students at the JV level are strongly encouraged to attend preseason practices.

Required Testing/Vaccination: In order to participate in preseason, all student-athletes must be fully vaccinated (two weeks after the last dose), or they must participate in testing. Please review the options below to determine how your student will satisfy the testing/vaccination requirement. 

  • Vaccination: Please upload a copy of your student's COVID-19 vaccine record to the immunization section of their Magnus account after their final dose of the vaccine. Your student must be FULLY vaccinated (two weeks after last dose) to be exempt from preseason testing.
  • Pool Testing: Unvaccinated students are required to participate in pool testing on the dates listed below. For more information on pool testing, please click here.
    • Thursday, August 19, from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. outside of the Scott A. Nelson Athletic Center (preseason participants only)
    • Thursday, August 26, from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. outside of the Scott A. Nelson Athletic Center (preseason participants only)
    • Thursday, September 2, from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m outside of the Scott A. Nelson Athletic Center (all non-vaccinated students/vaccine exempt employees)
  • Independent Testing: Unvaccinated students who are not participating in pool testing must submit a negative COVID-19 PCR or antigen test result to Tests must be dated within 72 hours of the start of that week's preseason practice.

Preseason Schedule
Please check the Team Schedules page for your specific team practice times. RCDS follows NY State heat guidelines, which require constant monitoring of the temperature of the practice environment. Please be aware that the weather may cause practice times to be altered unexpectedly. If you have any questions regarding preseason practices and/or schedules, please contact the Director of Physical Education and Athletics.

  • First Day: On the first day, please arrive at the athletic fields a few minutes before practice begins. Coaches will be in contact with students with specific information regarding check-in policies and locations. Athletes should arrive wearing RCDS team practice attire (see below) and should bring their sport-specific equipment. In the meantime, you are encouraged to reach out to your student’s coach should you have any questions.

Team Practice Attire
Upper School JV and Varsity players are required to wear RCDS apparel during practices and game warm-up. Please visit the Athletic Teamwear section of the online school store to order. Additionally, each athletic team will have the option to choose sport-specific team items. The coach will communicate this information and request permission and size to be ordered. Items received will be charged to the student’s account. Families who receive financial aid will be contacted by the Financial Aid Office for assistance with purchasing required athletic team items.

Students may also be asked to provide personal equipment for participation (sneakers, cleats, gloves, stick, shin guards, helmet, ice skates, etc.)

Magnus Requirements
The Magnus Health Portal will notify you via email when your student’s Interval Health History Form and other health requirements need to be completed. New York State requires that all parents/guardians of students in Grades 9 – 12 complete the Interval Health History. If your student is attending preseason, this form must be completed via Magnus by August 1. Students will not be permitted to participate in preseason, athletics, or P.E. without a completed form. Please contact Nancy Gordon, RN, at, with any questions.

Athletics Schedule Website
For regular season schedules, please visit the Team Schedules page, which is updated as schedule changes, cancellations, and additions occur. Please be sure to sign up for schedule alerts by clicking on the yellow bell icon next to the team (parents/guardians may select to be updated with an email or text message). On days with inclement weather, please visit the website to confirm the status of the interscholastic athletic contest. We strive to make decisions on cancellations and postponements as early as possible.

Athletic Trainers
Head Athletic Trainer Heidi Southard and Assistant Athletic Trainer Giovanni D’Onza are N.A.T.A. Certified Athletic Trainers and will be available for all RCDS student-athletes beginning August 23.
Impact Concussion Assessment Program
All current students entering Grades 7, 9, and 11 and all NEW students entering Grades 8, 10, and 12: Please read this information regarding the ImPACT Test from Head Athletic Trainer Heidi Southard. If you would like to opt out of the ImPACT Test, please complete the form mentioned at the bottom of Ms. Southard’s letter by the first day of school .


RCDS Physical Education is designed to balance personal choice at a developmentally appropriate level while maintaining standards of excellence in teaching lifelong lessons regarding health and exercise.

Upper School students participating in P.E. are required to wear appropriate athletic clothing including shorts/t-shirt, sweatpants/sweatshirt, and sneakers. RCDS-branded physical education clothing is optional in 2021-22. Those interested may purchase RCDS-branded attire online anytime at the Amerasport Online Store

Students may be asked to provide personal equipment for participation (sneakers, cleats, gloves, stick, shin guards, helmet, ice skates, etc.).  

Exemptions may be granted for participation in sports that are not offered at RCDS and must be executed at a high level in the opinion of the Exemption Committee. You may complete the online exemption application here. Fall exemption applications are due on September 7, 2021.

Have a wonderful summer!

Wendy Jo Haft
Director of Athletics & Physical Education


Phone: (914) 925-4539

Rye Country Day School
"Not for Self, but for Service"

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Rye Country Day School · Cedar Street · Rye, NY 10580 · USA