HARRISBURG (KDKA) — The Pennsylvania Department of Education and Department of Health are requiring students to wear masks at all times.
Just announced via @PADeptofEd in cooperation with the Department of Health: All students to wear face coverings at all times, while in school. This extends to instances when students and staff are able to maintain a six-foot social distance. Read more on https://t.co/VzcoJcDdrs. pic.twitter.com/ZScSTvmkqo
— Pa School Boards Asn (@PSBA) August 17, 2020
The announcement came on Monday from state officials. Here’s what state officials have to say:
“Yes, this order applies to all students, staff and visitors age two and older while in school entities, including public K-12 schools, brick and mortar and cyber charter schools, private and parochial schools, career and technical centers (CTCs), intermediate units (IUs); educational programming for students in non-educational placements such as residential settings (boarding schools), residential facilities, detention centers, and hospital settings; PA Pre-K Counts, Head Start Programs and Preschool Early Intervention programs; and Private Academic Nursery Schools and locally funded prekindergarten activities.
The Order was effective July 1, 2020 and will remain in effect until the Secretary of Health determines the public health risk is sufficiently reduced so that face coverings are no longer necessary as a widely utilized public health tool. For the safety of students, staff and families and to avoid community spread of COVID-19, students and staff are considered to be members of the public who are congregating in indoor locations. As such, they are required to adhere to this Order.
The order is effective immediately and applies to all children aged two and older.”
Per the Pennsylvania School Boards Association, they said that this announcement is an update from prior recommendations.
“The Pennsylvania Department of Education in cooperation with the Department of Health announced today, the requirement of all students to wear face coverings at all times, while in school. This is an update from the prior recommendation, in that, the requirement extends to instances when students and staff are able to maintain an appropriate six-foot social distance. The update is based on the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) updated guidance strongly recommending children age two and older should wear face coverings at all times to help mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus,” PSBA said on their website.
Stay with KDKA as we follow this developing story.