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Salt Lake City School District waiting on masks in schools

Students at Woodrow Wilson Elementary School in South Salt Lake wear masks as the get on a bus to go home after their first day of school on Monday, Aug. 24, 2020. Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — The Salt Lake City School District will continue the current practice of strongly encouraging all students, employees and visitors to wear masks. District officials plan to wait for more direction from Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall on masks in schools. This information was relayed in a statement from the SLCSD spokesperson Jason Olsen.

The statement pointed out that current law prohibits the district or a school from issuing a mask mandate.

However, Olsen went on to address those involved in the mask decision making process.

The district recognizes that the mayor has broad powers, independent of the board of education, under the Disaster Response and Recovery Act to address local emergencies and disasters affecting the city. Accordingly, we will await the mayor’s decision on whether she will issue an executive order.

Salt Lake City School District students will head back to school on Tuesday, August 24.

Read the statement in its entirety below. 

 Olsen adds, “in the meantime, we are excited and getting ready for the start of school.” 

The district’s full COVID-19 mitigation plans and policies are online here:

How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus

COVID-19 coronavirus spreads person to person, similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:

  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Wear a mask to protect yourself and others per CDC recommendations.
  • Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet).
  • If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities).
  • Obtain a flu shot.
  • Seek out the COVID-19 vaccine.

Local resources

KSL Coronavirus Q&A 

Utah’s Coronavirus Information 

Utah State Board of Education

Utah Hospital Association

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707

National Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Commonly asked questions, World Health Organization

Cases in the United States

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