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‘We want our parents to feel comfortable’: Gadsden County school district will require masks for students and teachers

Published: Jul. 28, 2021 at 6:23 PM EDT
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GADSDEN COUNTY, Fla. (WCTV) - Students, employees, and visitors at the Gadsden County school district will be required to wear masks when classrooms reopen in the fall.

The district is holding a firm stance following new CDC guidelines, even as surrounding school districts stick with an optional approach.

School officials say this policy will also apply to those who are fully vaccinated.

“Right now the safest that we can be for everyone involved is to have all individuals in our building wearing face coverings of some sort,” said assistant superintendent, Dr. Sylvia Jackson.

Dr. Jackson says masks will be required in any Gadsden County school buildings, as well as on buses.

“We want our parents to feel comfortable bringing their children back to a safe learning environment,” said Dr. Jackson.

Some Gadsden County residents say this decision is best for the children and are glad the school district is taking this stance.

“I know it’s kind of hard to wear them but for the safety of the kids. Because the grown folks can get a shot but the kids can’t,” said Carrie Woods.

“We got to protect ourselves we can’t depend on no else. I think if they’ve said that, it’s one of the best decisions the ever made to require students and staff to wear their masks,” said Ronald Jones.

Dr. Jackson says the district will go back to face-to-face learning in the fall, and will not be offering remote learning unless otherwise advised by the Commissioner of Education.

She says it is not mandatory for students and teachers to get the COVID-19 vaccine but they strongly recommend it.

“We strongly encourage every individual that is eligible to receive the vaccination to do so,” said Dr. Jackson.

Gadsden County students head back to the classroom the third week of August.

As for sports, the district plans to have a regular athletic season while still following CDC guidelines.

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