Massachusetts To Lift Mask Requirement For Schools When February Ends

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BOSTON – “Today, we are lifting the mask mandate in the schools” across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts announced Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Jeffery Riley this morning, February 9 at a press briefing.

The school mask mandate in Massachusetts will come to an end on February 28, one week after the end of February vacation, announced DESE today.

School districts no longer need to request a waiver from DESE to remove masks in school buildings where 80% of staff and students are vaccinated.

However, students will still be required to wear masks on all school buses because that is a federal order.

“We are moving from mask requirement to mask optional, and we want school districts to move along with the state by making it optional, while still creating supportive environments for students and staff who choose to wear a mask,” said Secretary Peyser.

With the mandate lifted, school districts will no longer need to request a waiver, said Riley.

Riley said masking in schools will now be a “community choice.”

The City of Framingham currently has an indoor mask policy for indoor spaces, as ordered by the Mayor and the Framingham Board of Health.

“We are removing mask mandate as it will make it easier to learn,” said Riley at the press briefing.

“There is a consequence to keeping kids in masks,” said Governor Charlie Baker during the press briefing.

Riley said he wants the school districts to “respect all individual choices around mask wearing.”

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