Volusia County Schools to require face-coverings for students K – 12.
Written by Kristen Schmutz
Belden Communications News
In an emergency meeting scheduled for Tuesday, August 31, the Volusia County School Board voted 3 – 2 on implementing a temporary face-covering policy for all Volusia County students starting Tuesday, September 7 through October 15.
While the policy goes into effect next Tuesday, there will be a grace period until Friday, September 10, to allow parents wanting a medical exemption the time to get an appointment scheduled.
As of Tuesday morning, there were 824 cases reported in Volusia County residents ages five to eighteen, according to Patricia Boswell, Director of the Florida Department of Health in Volusia County.
Between the high number of cases in the area and the number of children and staff quarantined across the county, the school board scheduled the meeting on Tuesday, offering plenty of deliberation to clarify the policy details, and narrow down the focus on which guidelines would be followed - the CDC or the Florida Department of Education.
Board members decided that contact tracing and quarantine information will follow the guidelines put out by the CDC.
According to a release from the school district, the policy will be reassessed at the regularly scheduled meeting on October 12. Masks and face shields will be allowed as per the policy and worn inside all schools and facilities, including buses. Students and teachers can remove masks or face shields while outside.
Along with the face-covering requirement, the district will be looking to reinstate mitigation procedures like frequent sanitation of desks and other high-touch point areas. While some agreed with the temporary policy, others did not, with shouts of "we will not comply" heard from outside the chambers as the meeting adjourned.
For more information on Volusia County Schools COVID-19 health and safety guidelines, visit vcsedu.org/covid-19-information.
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