Osceola County school district makes masks optional

Several Central Florida districts continue debate on mask policies

Where school districts stand on masks

OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – The Osceola County school board decided Tuesday to make masks optional for all students, parents and employees in district buildings starting July 1.

Masks will remain mandatory for everyone until July 1, according to the district. The board may readdress the issue again prior to July 1 if the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention relaxes its mask guidance further ahead of July, according to the district’s public information officer.

While masks will become optional at district buildings, they will still be required on school buses. The district said this is in accordance with the CDC guidance for public transportation.

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The decision comes as school districts in Brevard and Lake counties have already decided to make masks optional for the next school year.

Marion County has voted to make masks optional for summer school, but school leaders there are still waiting to decide whether that will apply to the 2021-2022 school year.

Volusia County school leaders are set to vote on a plan to make masks optional on June 14.

Orange County school leaders have drafted a proposal that would make masks voluntary for the upcoming school year. The proposed policy is set to be presented during a Rule Development Workshop on June 17 with public input, according to the district, and then a vote by the school board and final policy adoption will take place at the July 13 school board meeting with public comment.

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About the Author:

Thomas Mates is a digital storyteller for News 6 and ClickOrlando.com. He also produces the podcast Florida Foodie. Thomas is originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked in Portland, Oregon before moving to Central Florida in August 2018. He graduated from Temple University with a degree in Journalism in 2010.