By Stetson Miller

TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — Baltimore County student-athletes will soon have to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or face weekly testing.

“The data is just showing us that students athletes are believed to be at higher risk because they’re not masked during play,” said Gboyinde Onijala, BCPS Director of Communications and Community Outreach.

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Starting Nov. 24, high school students playing winter and spring sports will have to show proof of full vaccination or start the testing.

School officials say the change is being made to keep students safe and so they can keep playing sports safely.

“We have seen both in the fall, this fall, and last spring. We’re seeing higher number of covid cases among student-athletes,” Onijala said.

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Baltimore City, Anne Arundel County and Howard County Schools have also announced that they’re requiring vaccination or testing for student-athletes. It’s a change that many agree with.

“I believe it’s a good idea. Many sports require a lot of physical contact between team players which kind of goes against COVID protocol,” said Sara Heffner of Rosedale.

“The fact that kids are getting it you don’t want to take that chance,” said Veronica Stancliff of Edgemere.

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Testing will be provided by Baltimore County Schools at each student’s school.

Stetson Miller