Back to school preparations could once again look different this year.
Growing concern over the Delta variant might mean that students in several school districts will be required to wear masks.
Here is more on what students can expect.
Local COVID case numbers will play a large factor in whether or not students will need to wear masks this fall.
Several local school district officials are hoping for a greater level of normalcy this school year.
“In the fall we are excited about having all of our sports teams and especially our extracurricular activities such as band, speech and debate, that not only will people be practicing, but they are looking forward to competition as well. So we are hoping for a greater level of normalcy this come the fall,” said Dr. Ian Roberts, Superintendent of Millcreek School District.
Dr. Ian Roberts said that the future is difficult to predict, but once this is certain. For unvaccinated students, if they come into contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
“Not only are you going to miss athletics, but you are going to miss school. If you are a vaccinated individual and you are not symptomatic, if you come into contact with someone that is COVID positive, you will not be required to quarantine. So there’s a benefit certainly,” said Dr. Roberts.
In the Millcreek Township School District guidelines will be influenced by case numbers.
“Our health and safety plan has outlined a tiered system we are utilizing. So whether we are in moderate or high or substantial will determine if students are asked to wear a mask or if they are required to wear a mask,” said Dr. Roberts.
While local COVID case numbers will help school districts make decisions, the CDC is recommending unvaccinated students wear masks in the classroom.
“We are going to continue to utilize our multifactorial approach where we are looking at what is the data coming out of the CDC, the local department of health, and certainly our rate of COVID positives,” said Dr. Roberts.
The North East School District also released the following statement:
“Currently our draft plan states that masks will be highly recommended. However, it will be a parental option. We will continue to monitor spread within our local and school community as well as work with the Erie County Department of Health as to when we would recommend the requirement of face coverings in our district.”
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