Orange County school board to review draft policy making masks voluntary

Members will meet Tuesday afternoon

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ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – The school board for Orange County Public Schools will review a draft mask policy next week during a work session that would make masks voluntary.

Board members will meet Tuesday afternoon to review the policy put together by staff.

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The draft policy outlines mask usage among students, staff and visitors will be optional and up to the discretion of the person. The school district said once the revised policy is approved, it will go into effect no later than Aug. 2.

Several school districts have revised mask policies following the updated mask guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the expanded vaccine eligibility to kids as young as 12.

Marion County students will no longer be required to wear masks or face coverings starting June 1 after a unanimous vote from its school board. Students who wish to continue wearing masks can do so but school district officials say teachers, bus drivers and cafeteria staff will not be enforcing mask wearing.

Another school district that has made masks optional is Brevard County Public Schools. The school district voted last week to make masks optional starting after June 3, though the policy will not be in effect for upcoming graduation ceremonies.

Parents or guardians who would like to participate in public comment for the draft mask policy will have the opportunity to chime in during the Rule Development Workshop scheduled for June 17 at 1 p.m. and the school board meeting on July 13 starting at 4:45 p.m.

About the Author:

Brenda Argueta is a digital journalist who joined in March 2021. She graduated from UCF and returned to Central Florida after working in Colorado.