Local School Districts Make Mask Mandates Optional, Remove Entirely

The El Dorado Union High School District is not making masks a requirement inside classrooms. 

The school district said through a statement they are going to ask students to wear a mask, but not force them to leave a classroom for not wearing one, a policy that is actively defying the state guideline of keeping masks on while in schools. This comes after a huge student walkout and multiple protests yesterday over several school mask mandate. "I have mixed feelings about it,” parent Chris Connors said. “I want to get back to normal just like everybody else does. I am also empathetic to what the educators have to go through here, in making sure that they're safe and their families are safe."

Other districts, like the Roseville Joint Union High School District, have made masks optional for students. The district's teachers union are against the new mask policy, adding they were not informed ahead of time about the decision to make them optional, and call the resolution "ill advised." Cal/OSHA says district employees still need to wear masks inside classrooms.  

Earlier this week, California's top health official Dr. Mark Ghaly said he is not ready to end the mask mandate in schools just yet, but “anticipates” being able to make an announcement on or around Feb. 28 about a date when the state could move from a mandate to a recommendation. That is due largely to falling COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in California, which health officials are monitoring closely in order to make decisions regarding loosening state mandates.

Protests over masking in classrooms were also reported this week in several other districts, including Elk Grove, Carmichael and Sonora.

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