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Pasco County School District to issue emergency ruling to require face coverings

Posted at 6:22 AM, Jul 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-28 07:39:49-04

PASCO COUNTY, Fla. — On Tuesday the Pasco County School Board is expected to issue an emergency rule to require face coverings.

According to the mandate, masks would be required to be worn inside all buildings, classrooms, common areas and on buses.

Athletics are encouraged to wear masks during practice and play, but it wouldn’t be required.

Students and staff would have to provide their own face coverings. The district will not be providing masks and only has a limited number of disposable masks reserved for emergency situations.

According to the emergency ruling, the superintendent would only allow the removal of face masks when people are outdoors and social distancing, if someone is in a room alone with the door closed, during meal or snack times, and at the end of the day when exiting the building.

Schools would be required to create mask break opportunities for students.

In order to protect everyone on campus, there will be consequences for students who do things like refusing to wear a mask. First, students and parents will be counseled regarding the behavior. If that doesn’t work, the student will be removed from the school building and any school-sponsored activities. The student would then have to be educated via one of the distance learning options.

This also applies to students who refuse to abide by social distancing rules and middle or high school students who purposefully engage in conduct that would lead to the intentional spread of COVID-19.

There are exemptions for people with underlying health conditions.

If a staff member can’t wear a mask, they must provide medical documentation. If a student has an underlying health condition, they’ll have to provide a doctor’s note.

Tuesday's meeting starts at 6 p.m.