New state guidance for masks

New state guidance for masks
Posted on 08/20/2021
Dear L-S Students, Families and Staff,

Governor Baker and Commissioner Riley announced today the plan to require indoor universal masking for all schools grades K-12. The requirement would be in place at least until 10/1. The reason for this change is because state rates of COVID infection have increased over the summer and are now comparable to the rates that were in effect this past April when masks in school were last required. At the same time the state is developing metrics in connection with demonstrated vaccination status to determine what will be allowable after 10/1.

While I previsouly recommended universal masking for the start of school I had hoped to find a way to allow indoor athletes and drama students to be able to be maskless while on the courts or on stage. I will need to wait for more specific guidance from the state to see what may be permissible for these specific circumstances. A state mandate for masks in schools must be approved by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, which will not meet until this Tuesday.

I also want you to know that the school district will be collecting vaccination status information from all students and staff. Only our licensed health staff will have access to individual vaccination status. Please be sure to include with your student health emergency sheets an updated physical copy of student vaccination status. Alternatively, you may also let us know if you have chosen not to vaccinate your child at this time. This is so we will be able to affirm our aggregate vaccination status by 10/1. A health sheet is attached.

All individuals who are able to vaccinate are highly encouraged to do so as soon as possible. Please refer to www.mass.gov for further information about COVID vaccination and how to access vaccination. It contains many links to where one can go to be vaccinated and specific information for age 12 – 16 year olds. Please do not hesitate to contact our school nurses or your own health providers if you have any questions about vaccination.

Thank you to the Sudbury Health Department for providing the attached detailed guidance for mask wearing.

I will provide you further updates as we approach the start of school. Please try to keep in mind that while we may be wearing masks at the start we will also be starting fully in person, which is a tremendously positive improvement over the prior year!! I hope with everyone’s due diligence mask wearing will be a temporary requirement.

Sincerely,

Bella Wong