Mask mandate repealed for schools Dec. 22, what it means for Fenton High

Bree Soule, Online Editor-in-Chief

On Nov. 15, the Genesee County Health Department (GCHD) revoked it’s mask mandate order and, come Dec. 22, students age five and up will no longer have to wear masks in Genesee County schools based on health department orders. This was announced at a news conference held by Genesee County Medical Health Officer Dr. Pamela Hackert.

Now that the mandate is being lifted, it will be up to the schools to decide if they will require masking.

“We are waiting on the information regarding testing out of quarantine,” Fenton Area Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Adam Hartley said. “Once we know what the toolkits say, we will make a decision on which school toolkit, mandated or unmandated, best fits our needs.”

The GCHD still recommends masking in schools, Mid-Michigan Now reported, even though the order will no longer be in effect.

According to Michigan Live, the rescinding of the mandate has been Hackert’s plan for months— to “wait until the moment vaccines were available for children and consider retracting the mandate.”

With the mask mandate being lifted, the future of masks at Fenton High is currently unknown.

“I think the main thing is to know that we have and will continue to take many factors into consideration when making decisions about COVID-19 related items,” Hartley said. “We want our students to remain in class and at the same time want them to experience school as it should be experienced. The trends in cases, positivity rate and the recommendations from the GCHD will play a part in what our protocols are in the future.”

After the GCHD sends Fenton High the new toolkits, a confirmed plan will be in progress. More information will be provided to students after this plan is confirmed.