Written by Vincent Cain
Students in the San Diego Unified School District have been forced to wear masks indoors and outdoors for nearly a year. However, on Wednesday, the district’s policies changed.
On Wednesday, the San Diego Unified School Districts’ policies were adjusted to allow students to remove their masks outdoors. They have also lifted restrictions on field trips, allowing students, staff, and others to take off masks.
Field trips are authorized to continue indoors and outdoors, as long as the health and safety guidelines are followed. Regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status, indoor masking will still be mandated for all students and staff on district property.
Board President Sharon Whitehurst-Payne said, “Although we are making significant progress, now is not the time to let our guard down when it comes to COVID-19. Through a robust commitment to masking and our vaccination policy, we have made San Diego Unified schools some of the safest places in the community with respect to the virus. We want to keep it that way as we continue navigating out of the pandemic and will adjust accordingly.”
The district asserts that its cases of COVID-19 have dropped 56% since the Omicron peak, and positive test rates among those without symptoms or close contact have descended below 1%.
San Diego Unified has also announced that it will continue to hold its indoor mask mandate for schools at least until Feb. 28.
Additionally, the district will reconvene with its panel of experts to determine under what circumstances the indoor mask mandate can be lifted. Essentially, this means that they will do whatever is best for them politically, which they have been doing this whole time.
Board President Sharon Whitehurst-Payne communicated that they must keep masking children because not all are vaccinated, despite mountains of evidence showing they are at very low risk of the virus.
Photo Cred: Fox 5 San Diego