EVSC adjusts mask requirements

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EVANSVILLE, Ind (WEHT) – EVSC officials say based on guidance from the CDC and the Indiana Department of Health they are adjusting mask requirements in all schools. The decision comes weeks after school officials had originally planned on making masks optional for at least the start of the school year.

The decision also comes as state data shows over a dozen EVSC schools are dealing with at least one COVID-19 case.

EVSC spokesperson Jason Woebkenberg says the school corporation will do “whatever it takes” to keep students in the classroom, noting they believe being in the classroom is in the best interest of students and families.

Evansville Teachers Association President Lori Young says she supports the policy adjustment, saying the classroom is best for learning. Young says the EVSC has done a good job managing the changing situation around the COVID-19 pandemic. Young notes the EVSC was the only school system in the Midwest that did not have to shut down a building, keeping kids in the classroom for the entirety of the 2020-21 school year.

Masks will now be worn in classrooms with routine mask breaks provided. School officials believe by making this adjustment, they will reduce the number of individuals identified as close contacts. Officials also say that anyone identified as a close contact would be able to return to school after eight days with a recent negative COVID test.

EVSC parent Mandi Sartore says she’s fine with the update as long as her kids feel comfortable. She notes her kids, 12 and 14, are fine wearing masks and keeping a distance in the classroom.

Officials say they will make adjustments to their policy based on CDC guidance.

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