Cleveland Metropolitan School District requires masks for first 5 weeks of school

Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 10:55 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - As the Cleveland Metropolitan School District returns to five-day in-person instruction this fall, it will require all unvaccinated and vaccinated students, staff, and guests to wear masks for the first five weeks of school, CMSD CEO Eric Gordon announced on Monday.

Aside from at school, CMSD expects the masks to also be worn during indoor school events and activities.

The CDC released its latest updated guidelines for schools and school districts on July 9.

A couple of those recommendations are:

  • Masks should be worn indoors by all individuals (age 2 and older) who are not fully vaccinated. Consistent and correct mask use by people who are not fully vaccinated is especially important indoors and in crowded settings, when physical distancing cannot be maintained.
  • CDC recommends schools maintain at least 3 feet of physical distance between students within classrooms, combined with indoor mask wearing by people who are not fully vaccinated, to reduce transmission risk. When it is not possible to maintain a physical distance of at least 3 feet, such as when schools cannot fully re-open while maintaining these distances, it is especially important to layer multiple other prevention strategies, such as indoor masking.

[ Click here to see the full list of CDC Guidance for COVID-19 Prevention in K-12 Schools ]

At the time of the release of updated guidelines, Gov. Mike DeWine signed House Bill 244 requiring equal treatment of those who are vaccinated and those who are unvaccinated.

Gordon also stated that CMSD will continue to maintain the three-foot social distancing requirement where practical, although no student will be prohibited from attending full five-day, in-person learning.

All students and adults will continue to use touchless thermometers.

The new school year will also bring a full-time nurse to all CMSD campuses, Gordon announced.

PPE and sanitation practices will also remain in place.

CMSD will offer vaccination clinics for any student over the age of 11 and to any member of the student’s family, and will continue to offer free, voluntary COVID-19 testing throughout the district.

For those who will return to in-person learning, CMSD will no longer require school uniforms for most students, Gordon announced.

Details of the new dress code for the affected districts will be released.

For those who do not want to return to the classroom, CMSD will continue to operate its Virtual Academy while opening a formal remote school that will be staffed by CMSD teachers and educators in the fall, according to Gordon.

CMSD families interested in exploring either of the in-person or remote-learning options can call the School Enrollment Team at 216-838-3675.

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