MCSD officials provide mask update

Published: May. 18, 2021 at 11:36 AM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - The Muscogee County School Board met for the last time Mon. night before students are out for the summer. The superintendent provided updates on masks and learning plans moving forward related to the pandemic.

Superintendent Dr. David Lewis says they’re still planning for a full return to in-person learning this fall with a very restricted virtual option for medically fragile students or students who live with people with medical conditions. He says this will also be balanced with how the student may have done academically in the virtual environment this past year.

Based on the newest guidance from the CDC, and working with the Muscogee County School District’s medical panel, Dr. Lewis says they have gotten rid of masks outside.

“We will continue those masks for the remainder of the school year and going into the summer program, but then for the next school year we’re continuing to monitor that we’re expecting new guidance from the CDC to evaluate for the beginning of the next school year,” he said.

However, some parents feel the decision for mask requirements for children should be left up to the parents.

“Children experience a lower rate of infection and hospitalization from COVID so parents with concerns about infections are free to keep their children masked,” said Joshua Brandt, a parent of a kindergartener at Clubview Elementary School.

Brandt sites vaccination availability as one reason the decision to wear masks at school should be up to the parents.

“Currently, the COVID vaccine is available to all adults and children over 12. The CDC has stated that if you are vaccinated, you do not need to wear a mask. If teachers are concerned, they have all tools at their disposal to be vaccinated and be safe,” Brandt explained.

The superintendent says the district is continuing to work with their medical panel to make COVID-related decisions like mask requirements.

“Please rest assured that the medical panel are experts in their field and we’re very proud of the time they have donated and given to us,” said Dr. Lewis.

Dr. Lewis says they’ve continued to make adjustments throughout the course of this past year and will continue to do so going forward.

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