PHOENIX - It's been one of the biggest questions surrounding the reopening of Arizona schools: Will kids be required to wear masks?
The Maricopa County Department of Public Health updated their guidelines, recommending face coverings be worn in school settings:
- Wear face coverings when inside school buildings, anywhere on school grounds, and at school-related activities, whether indoor or outdoor.
- Face coverings must be worn by students and staff on buses or other public transportation vehicles.
- The face covering must cover both the nose and mouth. Always keep it in place. Students and staff should not touch the eyes, nose, or mouth when removing or adjusting a face covering.
Dr. Mark Joraanstad with Arizona School Administrators says, "It removes the issue of being contentious for governing boards if the county mandates it. On the other hand, it puts a problem in the laps of school districts in how do you enforce this if students refuse to wear this?"
Will this lay another additional burden onto teachers who are already dealing with pandemic students in a class room and dealing with a wearing of face coverings and the monitoring and enforcement?
Dr. Joraanstad also wonders if schools will provide face coverings. Will they be disposable or reusable? And how will the cost be covered?
"Generally, if you require something to be provided or used by students, you have to provide it."
There are some exceptions for when the masks can come off, which include eating, exercising, swimming.
Again, these are recommedations for districts to require face coverings.