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BREAKING: Prince William County schools to require face coverings for students, staff

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Prince William Times Mountain View Elementary__S527151.jpg

Mountain View Elementary kindergarten teacher Carrie Murphy helps a student during the first day of in-person learning last school year. 

Face coverings will be required on a nearly universal basis when Prince William County students return to schools on Aug. 23, Superintendent LaTanya McDade said in an announcement emailed to parents this morning.

Saying “safety will remain top of mind for everyone” amid the ongoing pandemic, and citing the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance, McDade said "universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status, will be required with some exceptions."

Students will be allowed to remove their masks while actively eating and drinking indoors, when they are participating in athletic activities indoors (although mask-wearing is “recommended” during those activities for the unvaccinated, the announcement said) and when they are playing musical instruments.

Vaccinated teachers and staff will not be required to wear masks when they are indoors with no students present and in the schools’ central offices. Unvaccinated staff members will have to wear masks in those settings, the announcement said.

“Additional exceptions may include medical conditions or students whose disability may prevent masking,” McDade added.

Exceptions will be made for people and children who cannot wear a mask, or cannot safely wear a mask, because of a disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act, the announcement said. Some examples included “teachers working with early learners, English learners, and/or students who receive speech language services — when critical to teach concepts using facial cues or phonetics.”

McDade said requiring face covering at the start of the school year would allow schools to maintain a “layer of mitigation” for staff and students when physical distancing is not possible; “significantly reduce” potential disruption caused by student quarantines; provide time for vaccines to become available for children under 12 and for more students of all ages to get vaccinated; and reduce potential impacts to staffing due to employee illness or quarantine.

“Many of us are experiencing pandemic fatigue and a real desire to return to normal. However, we are still in this together and will get through this,” McDade wrote.

The announcement follows the CDC's updated guidance on mask-wearing, announced Tuesday, July 27, which recommends that both unvaccinated and vaccinated people wear face masks in areas with "substantial" and "high" community transmission of COVID-19. Prince William County has been in the "substantial" range for community transition since at least Wednesday, July 28.

The decision also places Prince William County schools in line with recommendations from the Virginia Departments of Education and Health and other large school divisions in Northern Virginia. Schools in Alexandria, Arlington and Fairfax and Loudoun have also announced in recent days that all students and staff will be required to wear face masks at most times when the new school year begins.

This is a developing news story. It will be updated.

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(1) comment

Catharpin411

First of all this comes as no surprise as "go along" PWC caves into the demands of the whiney Teachers Union

The new Super came from ragingly liberal (and failed) Chicago

So there is no surprise they simply caved in.

Let's look:

The 7 day rate when the federal restrictions were lifted was just under 600 deaths.

The rate now is less then 250 yet the restrictions make a comeback.

Read, I mean read about Florida and the real rates of hospitization....don't swallow the MSM BS

Read about the death count in LA County which is headed to a shutdown...it's 1 (one).

Grab the stats and facts from the study on which these mandates are based...ohhh wait you can't cuz Fauci won't release them.

This is all about federal control and mind bending for kids.

Next will be some form of CRT though they will be clever enough to call it something else due to blowback.

Stand up PWC voters and get these people OUT

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