Advertisement

LPS to require masks for PreK - 6th grade students and teachers

LPS makes several changes to its Safe Return to School Plan.
Published: Aug. 5, 2021 at 1:31 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 5, 2021 at 2:58 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - With just over a week until school starts and an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases due to the Delta variant, Lincoln Public Schools announced several changes to its Safe Return to School Plan on Thursday.

The most noticeable change to the plan is a requirement for Prekindergarten - 6th grade students and their teachers to wear face coverings while inside buildings.

LPS strongly recommends unvaccinated students in grades 7-12 wear masks and is requiring them for their unvaccinated teachers. For students and staff who are fully vaccinated, face coverings are optional.

LPS Superintendent Dr. Steve Joel said if there are any sixth graders in middle school classrooms, then everyone in the classroom will need to wear a face covering.

Students PreK- 8th grade and staff in special education programs will be required to wear face coverings in buildings and on the bus.

LPS is not requiring vaccinations for its eligible students or teachers.

Students and staff will not be required to show proof of vaccination status and will use the honor system.

LPS said its plan for face coverings is based on current community conditions and recommendations from the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department and may change if there is an identified high risk of spread. LLCHD’s COVID-19 Risk Dial moved from low-yellow to mid-yellow on Thursday. The change indicates that the risk of the virus spreading and the impact on our community has increased, but it still moderate.

The Lincoln COVID-19 Risk Dial moved from low-yellow to mid-yellow on August 5, 2021.
The Lincoln COVID-19 Risk Dial moved from low-yellow to mid-yellow on August 5, 2021.(Lincoln Lancaster County Health Department)

“I would rather invest in being safe now than having students and teachers miss out on a lot of school,” Dr. Joel said.

Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Director Pat Lopez said there’s a misconception that COVID-19 doesn’t affect children.

“I hear that often - that children don’t get as ill. That may have been true before, but we’re dealing with a different variant,” Lopez said.

LPS also made changes to it’s face covering requirements for visitors. Click here to read the entire LPS Safe Return to School Plan.

Copyright 2021 KOLN. All rights reserved.