Breaking: PSD lifts mask mandate

Bruna Horvath, Staff Writer

On Friday, February 4, Poudre School District’s new superintendent, Brian Kinglsey, sent out an email declaring that the district has made the decision to lift the mask mandate starting February 11 at 11:59 pm. This decision was made in accordance with Larimer County’s Department of Health and Environment’s mask mandate expiring.

In this email, PSD explains that Public Health officials are still recommending the use of masks, but that following this decision, they hope that “everyone treats one another with dignity and respect, whether they choose to wear one or not.”

However, even after the mandate is lifted, masks will still be required on school buses and Early Childhood Education classrooms. Masks will also be required when returning from quarantine. If a student tests positive for COVID-19, they are required to isolate themselves for five days and upon their return to school on the sixth day, they are required to wear a mask for four more days.

These guidelines will have some fluctuation, depending on the rise and fall of COVID-19 cases in Larimer County. PSD explains that they are still awaiting finalized guidance from the Health Department.

Even though PSD will now be maskless, PSD states that this doesn’t necessarily mean that everything will go back to normal, “…PSD still faces challenges like staffing shortages and outbreaks that could prompt shifts to remote learning.”

In a YouTube video posted on PSD’s channel, Kinglsey talks about the COVID-19 protocols that will still be maintained. Sanitization and cleaning of schools will still be effective, washing hands and social distancing will continue to be promoted and recommended, contact tracing in high risk areas will continue to occur, and those who feel sick will be encouraged to stay home.

Kingsley ends his video with an encouraging message, “This is going to take all of us to do the right thing, come together, to continue to adapt, to learn and to persist.”