FAYETTE COUNTY, WV (WOAY) – As the latest COVID-19 surge numbers drop, school boards across the state aren’t hesitating to respond.
In many counties, schools have already lifted their mask mandates for students and staff. In Fayette County, it’s no different.
“I think the state department opened up some guidance on that topic, they opened up some guidance where we no longer had to quarantine,” says Superintendent of Fayette County Schools Gary Hough.
“The COVID quarantines had been released so that kind of drove some of our process in terms of lifting that mask mandate.”
If a student or staff member tests positive for COVID they still must remain out of school for five days. They will then be obligated to wear a mask for the first five days upon their return.
Although navigating the course of the virus remains unpredictable, Hough feels confident with the decision to lift the mandate at this time.
“Mask are still optional, that’s really important that people understand,” he says.
“We thank everybody for their patience the last couple of years with wearing their masks and doing what we have asked them to do, but at this point the only time that you would have to wear as mask is if you were COVID positive. It’s an everchanging situation but at this point it looks positive, the numbers are going down, it looks very positive.”
While many parents and public officials have pushed to reverse mask mandates, some health officials are saying that it might be too soon.
Schools throughout the region may be giving people the option to wear a mask, but they are encouraging those who are unvaccinated or immunocompromised to continue to do so.