Wake County school leaders could announce mask mandate for students, staff Tuesday night

Wake County News

CARY, N.C. (WNCN) — The Wake County Board of Education will discuss on Tuesday evening whether or not to implement a mask mandate for all students and staff.

Parents against the plan have already scheduled a “Free the Smiles” protest out front of the meeting in Cary.

This discussion comes as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to rise across the state.

The Centers for Disease Control’s updated guidance recommends people living in high transmission areas wear masks indoors, even if they are already vaccinated. That goes for 79 of North Carolina’s 100 counties — including Wake County.

While the state is recommending mask mandates, it’s up to each school district to make the decision for their schools.

So far, Johnston County has voted to make masks optional while Cumberland, Nash and Lee counties are requiring students and staff to wear a face mask.

As of right now, Durham County schools will require masks but will meet again in a couple of weeks to review the policy.

Year-round Wake County students are already wearing face coverings at school and on the bus.

A number of county and city buildings across central North Carolina have already brought back mask requirements. A few went into effect last week and others were put into place effective on Monday.

The school board will meet at 5:30 p.m. to discuss the mandate. A work session at 3 p.m. will precede the meeting.

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