Dare County schools publish universal mask policy starting September 2
DARE COUNTY, NC (WAVY) – Dare County is now one of North Carolina’s 108 school districts with a universal mask policy.
The decision was unanimous on Wednesday night after board members received letters from Governor Roy Cooper and various health officials asking them to reassess their COVID-19 protocols for the 2021-2022 school year.
Everyone inside a school division facility will now be required to wear masks effective Thursday, September 2.
The board surveyed schools on August 23 and September 1. On August 23, 30% of students and 40% of employees reported wearing a mask. On September 1, that number jumped to 45% of students and 75% of faculty after the virus began to spread. Seventy-nine people were reportedly exposed to COVID-19 during the first week of class.
This week, that number is now 399. Anyone who has come into contact with an infected person has had to quarantine themselves for 14 days.
“I don’t want to get into a public debate on masks. What I am simply saying is that if the goal is to keep children in school, then the way is either to reduce the number of children in school or to move to universal masking, ”he said. said Superintendent John Farrelly.
Farrelly explained that 98% of classes in Dare County schools are unable to socially distance themselves and he strongly recommended a universal mask policy. He said that when students mask themselves, they won’t have to self-quarantine if someone contracts COVID-19.
Moments before the motion was passed, two parents were escorted out of the meeting for being disruptive. They were disappointed with the mask policy.
The school board also voted to limit non-essential visitors and make vaccine information available on the district’s website.
Families who wish to enroll in the District’s Virtual Academy and return to class in person will have until September 6 to do so. An email will be sent to all parents and guardians on Thursday morning with a link to PowerSchool. They can either ask that their student exit the virtual or go into the virtual program.
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