SARASOTA, Fla. — The Manatee County School Board repealed the usage of face masks for all employees, students, and visitors to district facilities, school district events, and in school district facilities.
The move was widely expected as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continue to relax guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic. Manatee County had been under a mask mandate since August 11 of last year.
“When the mask mandate was initiated in August, I firmly believe it was the right thing to do and I think the mandate helped us complete this school year without missing a single day of school,” Manatee County Superintendent Cynthia Saunders said in a statement. “To me, the decision today represents the closing of one chapter, and the beginning of a new one.”
Masks for students ended Thursday with the completion of the school year. The school district said graduation ceremonies next week for six high schools in the county will give students and attendees the option of wearing masks. Face masks will also be optional for summer school in Manatee County starting in June.