DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – New guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are opening a path to normalcy in many areas of the country, but some districts here in the Miami Valley aren’t going to ditch the mask mandates this school year.
“Mask mandates and the health protocols that we’re doing remain unchanged. We’ve been in person all year 5 days a week,” said Scott Marshall, district communications coordinator at Springboro Schools.
In Springboro, school leaders say they feel that both teachers and students will be willing to continue the mask guidelines, even if they’ve been fully vaccinated.
“Our students and staff have just been great all year long in following the health protocols, our mask updates, social distancing,” said Marshall.
Medical experts, like Dr. Roberto Colon, chief medical officer at Miami Valley Hospital, agree that continuing mask wearing in schools is the right choice for now.
“We just now opened up vaccinations for 12 and up, so it’s going to take some time for us getting kids fully vaccinated. By then the school year is gonna be done for most of the but under 12 still won’t be able to get it. Even for kids 16 and up, vaccination rates are not very high,” said Colon.
Tipp City Schools will also continue the mask protocols for the rest of this school year.
“Mask and social distancing protocols have been so successful for the school districts that those should stay in place for the remainder of the school year,” said Tipp City Schools Superintendent Mark Stefanik.
Dayton Public Schools Superintendent Elizabeth Lolli says students and faculty will continue wearing masks as well. Lolli released a statement saying in part, “At this time, all COVID-19 preventative measures are still in place for staff and students. Nothing has changed in the Dayton Public Schools.”
School leaders say they’re trying to remain excited and optimistic about the future, and will reevaluate the mask mandates ahead of the 2021-22 school year.