Shenandoah Co. Public Schools requires masks indoors
SHENANDOAH CO., Va. (WHSV) - Shenandoah County Public Schools has announced that beginning Monday, August 9, all students, staff, teachers, and visitors are required to wear face coverings while inside schools. Masks are also required on all school transportation.
SCPS mentions that during Governor Northam’s press conference August 5, he stated that schools must follow Centers for Disease Control guidance or they would be in violation of the law.
The legislation passed in March 2021 regarding the return to 5-day in-person instruction states that schools must “provide such in-person instruction in a manner in which it adheres, to the maximum extent practicable, to any currently applicable mitigation strategies for early childhood care and education programs and elementary and secondary schools to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 that have been provided by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
Due to the circulating and highly contagious Delta variant, CDC currently recommends universal indoor masking by all students, staff, teachers, and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status.
SCPS reports that the daily number of COVID cases in Shenandoah County has increased over the past few days.
“Our transmission rates have moved into the substantial transmission category according to the CDC data, and Shenandoah County is surrounded by counties in the high transmission category. We have also had seven confirmed cases among students and staff,” SCPS officials said.
SCPS says their primary goal is to keep schools open for in-person learning and to keep all students and staff healthy and safe.
School officials add that data shows that masking works, especially when layered with other mitigation strategies like hand washing, physical distancing, cleaning and staying home when sick.
If all students are masked, the distance for determining a close contact for students drops to 3 feet instead of 6 feet. That means that fewer students will be quarantined in the event of a positive case, officials say.
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