FCUSD Message to the Community – Governor’s Announcement Ending Mask Mandates in Schools
February 28, 2022
Dear Folsom Cordova Unified Staff and Families,
Today the Newsom Administration announced that the state is lifting the mask mandate in schools, effective at the end of day on March 11th. To view the Governor’s announcement, please visit this website.
FCUSD will continue to follow the current California Department of Public Health (CDPH) mandates. In conjunction with CDPH, the Sacramento County Department of Public Health (SCPH) has stated “Effective March 12th (end of day on March 11th), universal masking requirements in K-12 and Childcare settings will move to a strong recommendation. Schools/districts may choose to continue to require masks after this date, however, there will be no statewide or local mandate requiring them.”
On February 17, 2022, the FCUSD Board adopted a Resolution that allows us to “Eliminate COVID-19 Health Mandates Immediately Upon State or Local Authorizing Action.” This resolution acknowledges the District’s compliance to follow the current CDPH mandates until such authorization is amended by either state or local officials, and to immediately adhere to the newest mandates once received.
Therefore, as of March 12 masking will be optional in all FCUSD schools.
Key takeaways regarding today’s announcement from the state:
- Indoor masking rules will remain in effect until 11:59 p.m., March 11, 2022
- On March 12, 2022, the masking guidance from CDPH will shift from a requirement to a strong recommendation for schools.
- Per the CDPH, this decision to shift their guidance is based on the sharp and continued decrease in the number of active COVID-19 cases, hospitalization, and vaccination rates in California.
- FCUSD will continue to follow CDPH guidelines for student and staff safety.
- FCUSD will continue with its extensive safety measures in place that protect student and staff from COVID-19, which include Merv-13 filters in every FCUSD building, air purifiers in every classroom (starting Feb.28, 2022), hand sanitizer widely available, and physical distancing when appropriate and feasible.
- Continued respect and support for students and staff who wish to continue wearing masks.
For the next two weeks, while masking is still required, CDPH has afforded school districts the discretion as to how to enforce mask mandates. The protocols currently developed by the District include the following steps for mask enforcement.
- Administration/nurse or counselor talk to students who are choosing not to mask about the mandate.
- A student not wearing a mask will be given a mask.
- Staff will share that there are students who need to wear the mask due to their own health condition(s) or are wearing the mask for the wellbeing of a family member.
- If a student still doesn’t want to wear a mask but also doesn’t want to go to the classroom out of concern for others, he or she may voluntarily work from an alternative area on campus.
- Students who go to class and don’t wear a mask will be physically distanced from peers wearing masks.
- Each site and classroom will work within their facility parameters to follow safety requirements for physical distancing.
- Teachers will be allowed to use plexiglass around their desk if so desired.
- Optimize ventilation in classrooms beyond the upgraded Merv 13 HVAC filters, and as appropriate by adding air purifiers in classrooms (Implementation to begin the week of February 28, 2022).
- If, after applying these action steps, as reasonable and necessary to secure compliance and promote health and safety for students and staff, seek supervisor approval for additional interventions.
We value every member of our FCUSD community and it’s essential to us that everyone feels safe. While we have a diverse population with differing views and different health conditions, we ask our parents, students, and staff to please be respectful of each other’s different views. Now that we have an end date, we ask all to continue following the state requirements for masking for a few more days.
To reach out to state decision makers with questions, concerns, or comments, please click on the links below:
Yours in Education,
Sarah Koligian, Ed.D