Nashville schools to not enforce mask mandates this fall

This year, back-to-school may resemble back to some semblance of normalcy, according to upcoming plans from area districts.

Nashville schools released return-to-school plans for the upcoming academic year last week, and each district is not requiring a mask mandate at this time.

Citing recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the plans state that since the federal and state mandates have been lifted. The schoolswill require passengers on school buses to wear face coverings, which is in accordance with current guidelines.

Nashville Community High School District 99 released its plan on Friday, stating that the school will 

“While our plan specifies guidelines for our staff and students, everyone’s health and safety is dependent on each individual,” the plan said. “Each staff member should ensure their own and others’ health and safety by adhering to these guidelines and reporting any issues or safety concerns to the administration. Each of us will play a role in our collective safety.”

Principal Mark Begando would be in charge of individual review plans for review and approval.

During the regular meeting last Tuesday, Superintendent Brad Turner reflected on the upcoming changes.

“It won’t be like it was last year,” Turner said.

District 49 has made similar moves to put the decision on each individual in hopes to make the 2021-22 school year “as normal as possible,” according to an email to parents.

“While Nashville #49 recommends that any unvaccinated individuals wear a mask while at school, our district has made the decision not to make the wearing of masks mandatory to begin the 2021-2022 school year,” the plan said. “The decision to wear a mask will be made by each individual parent on behalf of their student.  This procedure will apply to all students, staff members, and visitors inside the school building and on school grounds.  This procedure may be revised at any time based on Covid-19 conditions in the school or the community.”

Trinity St. John issued a similar plan recommending unvaccinated individuals wear a

mask while at school but the wearing of masks mandatory will not be mandatory to begin the school year.

The return-to-school plans also encourage social distancing whenever possible. Other preliminary precautions such as temperature checks will also be discontinued at this time.

The free breakfast and lunch program for all students will also be in effect for Nashville District 49 this year.

In-person back-to-school events return this August. The Nashville District 49 will be holding its open house on Aug. 9, where families can come to school to find their children’s homeroom, drop off school supplies, meet the teachers, and view the school building.

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