Sunday, November 27, 2022

Coronado Public Schools Mask Update

Big changes come almost exactly two years after schools closed on March 13, 2020.


With declining case rates and hospitalizations across the West, California, Oregon and Washington all announced on February 28, 2022 that they are moving to update their masking guidance. After 11:59 pm on March 11, all three states will adopt new indoor mask policies, and move from mask requirements to mask recommendations in schools.

California Governor Gavin Newsom stated today, “California continues to adjust our policies based on the latest data and science, applying what we’ve learned over the past two years to guide our response to the pandemic. Masks are an effective tool to minimize spread of the virus and future variants, especially when transmission rates are high. We cannot predict the future of the virus, but we are better prepared for it and will continue to take measures rooted in science to keep California moving forward.”

The Changes in California

Starting March 1, 2022, masks will no longer be required for unvaccinated individuals, but will be strongly recommended for all individuals in most indoor settings.

After Friday, March 11, in schools and child care facilities, masks will not be required but will be strongly recommended.

Masks will still be required for everyone in high transmission settings like public transit, emergency shelters, health care settings, correctional facilities, homeless shelters and long-term care facilities. As always, local jurisdictions may have additional requirements beyond the state guidance.

Changes in Coronado

Following these announcements, Coronado Superintendent Karl Mueller sent the following message to the CUSD community:

Today, California Governor Gavin Newsom and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced the statewide timeline for public schools that will lift the mandatory masking mandate for both vaccinated and unvaccinated students. The announcement included the following key points:

  • The statewide school indoor mask mandate will expire for all students, regardless of vaccination status, at the end of the day on Friday, March 11.
  • Monday, March 14 will be the first school day with no state requirement.
  • County public health officers and local education agencies may still impose rules more stringent than the state.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, CUSD has followed CDPH guidance and adhered to mandates. We will continue to follow current guidelines.

We appreciate and acknowledge that lifting the mask requirement may cause anxiety for some people, especially those who are at higher risk for Covid or live with someone who is immunocompromised. Please note that mask wearing remains strongly recommended by the state and will remain an option for every student or staff member who wishes to wear one.

We also recognize that there are others who do not support masking in schools and believe that mask requirements should end immediately. Our decision to adhere to CDPH guidelines – no more, no less – has enabled us to continue in-person learning during the pandemic.

An explanation on the rationale for lifting mask requirements and the new guidance/implementation timeline can be found here.

As we navigate out of the pandemic and into the endemic phase of Covid, we appeal to everyone in our school community to respect one another and act with compassion, civility, and understanding of individual perspectives and choice. Please keep the following in mind:

  • On Monday, March 14, masking in schools is optional and a personal choice. Respect each other’s choices.
  • Those at risk for severe disease, or living with someone who is, can and should continue to wear masks.
  • Teachers may discuss the change with students in a developmentally appropriate manner, including how to respect everyone’s personal choice.
  • If your child(ren) expresses any anxiety, feel free to reach out to our school counselors for additional support as needed.
  • Students and staff should continue to remain home when sick.
  • Students and staff are encouraged to take a COVID-19 test if exhibiting symptoms and/or if they have a known exposure to COVID-19.

We appreciate your continued patience and understanding as we continue to move forward. Though the mask mandate is ending soon, our mitigation strategies (monitoring symptoms, testing, ventilation, etc.) will continue to be a priority.

Image by Alexandra_Koch Pixabay

 



Managing Editor
Managing Editor
Originally from upstate New York, Dani has lived in Coronado since 1996. She is happy to call Coronado home and to have raised her children here. In her free time she enjoys reading, exercising, trying new restaurants, and just walking her dog around the "island." Have news to share? Send tips or story ideas to: [email protected]
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