Ohio Children’s Hospital Association urges schools to mandate masks for students, teachers during COVID-19 surge

Published: Sep. 14, 2021 at 12:03 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 14, 2021 at 12:04 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine and officials from children’s hospitals across the state discussed efforts that they hope will help keep children in school amid growing concerns over rising COVID-19 cases.

During a Tuesday afternoon briefing, representatives from the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, who joined Gov. DeWine, asked for a mask mandate for children and faculty members in schools.

“We all share the goal of keeping our kids in school,” Gov. DeWine said in support of the hospital association’s request. Reasonable people may disagree about a lot, but we can all agree that we must keep our children in the classroom so they don’t fall behind and so their parents can go to work and not take time off to watch their kids at home.”

“The data is now clear that there is a higher level of COVID in school districts where masks are not required,” Gov. DeWine added.

The governor’s comments come as hospitals in Ohio, such as Southern Ohio Medical Center, reported reaching a grim threshold for ICU capacity.

Dr. Vanderhoff and other health officials from across Ohio have previously said returning to remote learning is a real possibility if case and hospitalization rates don’t improve.

This story will be updated at the conclusion of Gov. DeWine’s remarks.

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