A decision made today by Everett schools on how they will deal with masks starting March 21. Masks will be optional but recommended. Here is a letter explaining the decision and policy details sent to parents Friday by Dr. Ian B. Saltzman, Superintendent of Everett Public Schools.
Hope you enjoyed this sunny afternoon and had a great winter break. I have an update to the letter I sent yesterday about the governor lifting the statewide mask mandate on March 21 and the potential change to masking in our schools. In the letter, I stated that we await clarification and a review of the implications.
Since the Governor’s press conference, we have heard that our local health district will not be imposing a mask mandate in Snohomish County, which it may do if it deems it necessary for public health. Additionally, the Washington Department of Health is updating its K-12 guidelines, which will be completed by March 7, but indications show that they will also remain consistent with the governor’s announcement.
As a result of this information, Everett Public Schools will lift the mask mandate in schools and the district office on March 21. Masks will be optional but recommended.
Currently, there are only three situations for schools that will continue to require masking:
• On buses: Transportation protocols are a federal mandate from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and have not changed at this time.
• If a COVID-positive person returns to work, school, or other public places after a 5-day isolation period, they should wear a properly fitting mask for 6-10 days after the onset of their symptoms or a positive test result.
• Anyone who has been exposed to someone with COVID should continue to wear a mask when around other people for the full 10 days following exposure.
There are still more changes pending, and we don’t have all the answers yet. We ask for patience and cooperation from staff and parents as we navigate these changes and their impact on our daily operations. Our most immediate consideration includes:
• Medically fragile students and staff
• Emotional and physical health impact of reduced multi-level mitigations for students and staff
Until March 21, masks are still required in Everett Public Schools and must be worn.
Over the next two weeks, talk with your family and decide if wearing a mask at school is right for your child. Some families may decide they are done wearing masks all together, others will continue to wear them. We will support you no matter what you decide. We ask everyone to be respectful and sensitive to the individual needs of our families and staff in this transition. For more information on changing masking, visit our masking web page.
Respect personal choice
• We offer personal choice with the expectation that individual choices are respected.
• Do not make assumptions or comment on someone’s beliefs or health status.
• Be respectful if someone asks you to stay physically distant from them. We will continue to ensure physical distancing where possible in our classrooms until further notice.
• Schools will discuss change with students in a developmentally appropriate way, including how to respect individual choice.
Family message on masking February 18, 2022
• If your child(ren) are expressing anxiety, please contact your school counselors or principal for additional support as needed.
Now more than ever, it’s essential that our students and employees adhere to these important health measures.
• Maintain social distancing in classrooms, learning spaces, hallways and cafeterias whenever possible.
• Continue to wash and sanitize your hands throughout the day.
• Stay home when sick and watch for COVID symptoms.
Thank you for all you have done to help us maintain a safe, healthy and welcoming learning environment. I’m proud of what everyone has done to keep learning a priority while keeping everyone safe.
Stay safe and be well,
Dr. Ian B. Saltzman