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Subject: You're right -there are already staggered times at an O...but...


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Date Posted: 09:18:02 08/10/20 Mon
In reply to: Jeff 's message, "what do you mean by staggered times? isn't that the way it is already? even if the hard shoe round starts at 8am, some dancers don't go on stage until closer to 9 or 930. What is a wild guess to how many people are at the O on any particular day? 1000? pretty hard to fathom, when other states are only allowing 50." on 15:22:17 08/09/20 Sun

But there is no enforcement (nor has there needed to be) of who is in the room when. Friends in different age groups cheering on their classmates, whole extended families (parents, grandparents, aunts/uncles) cheering on their dancer - teachers and teaching assistants galore plus their significant others- etc. etc. etc.

All of the below is assuming children will mask when not dancing- non- dancing adults will mask at all times (unless you are a musician playing an instrument) and physical distancing will be required while in common spaces. It also assumes ample access to hand sanitizer provided by the facility ;). The NERO should have something for each family to sign that they agree to these very basic safety requirements and that they could be asked to leave if they are found in violation.

So- Lets say you have 400 open level kids dancing in a day-(14 age groups of boys and girls -this happened last year at NERO) and stagger times for each age group (each age group scheduled as they have been in past years).

You enforce a 1:1 ratio (1 parent/guardian per dancer) and only allow TCRGs to attend (no teaching assistants- btw, this was piloted at a UT feis) - with a limited number of teachers allotted to each school allowed to attend each day (4 teachers per school would be fair if 3 ballrooms were running at a time).

If you do this, numbers will not be anywhere near 1000 during each staggered line up.

Example: a group with 80 kids (one of the larger groups last year)- divided into groups of 40 (at a time) in a ballroom similar to the size of the Hartford space- physically distanced with spaces clearly marked with tape - no facility chairs in the room (bring your own, like we do at feiseanna) You start with 80 ppl (dancer + 1 parent/guardian). You add 3 judges, physically distanced. Stagehands x 5 physically distanced- 3 on stage, 2 at entry doors. Musicians x 2 physically distanced + TCRGs (remember- limited number of these) Everyone not performing wears a mask.

You break the 40 dancers already in the ballroom into smaller groups of 10 that then line up as called and are spaced in a physically distanced manner until they dance 2 at a time on a divided stage.

Dancers and their 1:1 stay in the ballroom until everyone in their 40 person cohort has finished. Each dancer returns to their "circle" when they are finished with their round. Dancers can stretch, change shoes, etc. during this time. Protocols in place if a run to the bathroom is needed.

Once the first 40 have danced their HS round, they are moved, by a staff member, in a physically distanced fashion, masked, etc., with their zuca/portable chair and parent/guardian, into a pre-determined holding area (also marked and physically distanced).

Please note- Before the first 40 are moved into the holding area by a staff member, the second group of 40 dancers + parent/guardians have been moved out of the same holding area towards the ballroom to dance by a staff member.

Specific logistics of movement to prevent paths crossing would be specific to whatever location is found.

The SS round moves forward in the same way -however, the judges panel would change, so you would have to have someone sanitize the tables, chairs prior to new judges arriving.

Set round (now making the numbers halve) would be handled the same way. Recalls on social media only.

The age groups not dancing would not be allowed in the ballroom area AT ALL until they are called. This would require more than the usual staffing to screen, but with the limited amount of people in the general space by design, this shouldn't be a problem. Schools should reserve practice rooms and would be responsible for making their spaces safe and stagger times, but this would NOT be part of the O committee's responsibilities.

There should be robust social media coverage on multiple platforms to allow for proper communication, because we all know that life happens, and an estimated time on a schedule may not be accurate in realtime.

This is just one way to stagger times for dancers while mitigating risk. And this is for one of the largest sized groups. The smaller groups should be MUCH easier to manage. Will it require more volunteers? Yes. Will it require us, as a dance community to be more patient? Yes. Will it probably take MUCH longer to do each round? Yes. But it is worth it, if we get the chance to have an O -and have one that responsibly mitigates risks? Probably yes.

One could even imagine splitting the open level O into 3 days (no teams this year, right?) and limiting number of Trad sets entered per school as a way to make numbers on each day as small as possible.

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