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Mask mandate for grades PK-6 extended to Oct. 25, 2021

Dear NAPLS Learning Community,

Our school district’s primary focus is to keep students safe and in school to learn. Since the start of our school year, we have monitored our data.  In September,  local health officials confirmed the need to increase mitigation efforts due to an anticipated surge in cases.  Local, state, and national public health officials continue to note the importance of wearing masks while indoors amid an increase in the highly transmissible COVID-19 delta variant - especially for those who are unvaccinated. The good news is that our current data appears to demonstrate the beginning of a downward trend in positivity rates.

At the Board of Education Meeting tonight, the board reviewed the resolution adopted in early September requiring masks for all in grades PK-6.  The board voted to extend the mandate until October 25, 2021. PK-6 students will continue to be required to wear masks indoors while at school. Parents/guardians may continue to provide direction on their mask preference for the child(ren) when outdoors.  Further, all staff members serving students in grades PK-6 at any time are also required to wear a mask indoors at the Early Learning Center, Primary School, and Intermediate School regardless of their vaccination status.  

All PK-12 students and staff are still required to wear masks on school transportation in accordance with the federal order.

In alignment with our public health experts, we strongly recommend that middle school and high school students and staff wear masks while indoors, particularly for those who are unvaccinated. We will continue to not mandate masks indoors for grades 7-12 students and staff unless there are rising levels of positive cases and quarantines that would necessitate making mask-wearing a requirement.  

Remember, the Ohio Department of Health’s guidelines for quarantine after exposure in K-12 settings allow vaccinated individuals to remain in the classroom and participate in extracurricular activities and sports as long as they have no symptoms. Importantly, if the exposed individual was unvaccinated but wearing a mask, they can also remain in the classroom and participate in sports and extracurricular activities as long as they have no symptoms.  We strongly encourage anyone eligible to be vaccinated to consult with their medical provider if unvaccinated.

We recognize that changes in COVID health and safety protocols have been challenging and divisive for some members of our community. While members of our community may not be unified on the benefits of mask-wearing or vaccinations, we hope we can all come together to prevent full quarantines and keep our kids in school.  The Board of Education will continue to review the health and safety protocols at its next meetings on October 11th and October 25th to confirm our path forward.

Sincerely, 


Michael Sawyers                    John McClelland
Superintendent                      Board President