This is George Joseph, Superintendent of the Kent City Schools.
Dear parents, staff and community members:
I have received encouragement and support from our local health departments to now require the wearing of masks for all students PreK-12, including staff and visitors in the Kent City Schools. Out of an abundance of caution, this will add one more layer of protection for all entering our schools regardless of vaccination status. We know that masks protect the wearer and those around them. Another contributing factor is the recent higher transmissibility of the Delta variant for both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals. We will reevaluate our mask requirement monthly.
The benefit of wearing a mask is if your child is exposed to a known case and is not vaccinated, they do not have to be quarantined unless they become symptomatic. So mask wearing will keep your child attending school. This health department quarantine guidance is specific to classroom settings.
The best way to keep children in the educational setting is for parents to be fully vaccinated, children when eligible to be fully vaccinated, and for all to wear a mask in the school setting regardless of their vaccination status. With the safety measures the Kent City Schools has put in place, upgraded ventilation with Bipolar Ionization, use of physical distance (3 feet), and now masking of students and staff, very few
students should miss school due to exposure in the classroom setting.
Now that we have air conditioning in all of our elementary schools, students and staff will be more comfortable wearing masks inside.
We have gone above and beyond by upgrading our building ventilation system at each elementary school to improve outside airflow from 25% to 35%. This will better protect our students and staff in the classroom. We have added Bipolar Ionization in all of our school buildings that will improve indoor air quality and fresh airflow in our schools.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention released their updated (August 5, 2021) Guidance for COVID-19 Prevention in K-12 Schools. (Click the link below)
Due to the circulating and highly contagious Delta variant, CDC recommends universal indoor masking by all students (age 2 and older), staff, teachers, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. (Revised 8-5-21)