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Daviess County, OPS, Owensboro Catholic Schools announce reopening plans

Students, staff not required to wear masks
Published: Jul. 16, 2021 at 10:51 AM CDT
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OWENSBORO, Ky. (WFIE) - The Daviess County and Owensboro Public Schools Boards of Education, as well as the Owensboro Catholic Schools, have collectively announced plans to return to full, in-person instruction for the 2021-22 school year.

[Click here to read the plan]

All districts say mask wearing will be optional for all students and staff at all school functions during the upcoming school year, unless directly ordered by Gubernatorial or Presidential Executive Order, the Kentucky Department of Public Health, the Kentucky Department of Education or the local health department.

”Mask wearing will be optional for everyone involved for any school activity as we start the school year,” Matthew Constant, the Owensboro Public Schools Superintendent said. “With that being said, we want to empower our families to make those decisions, if they want to have their children wear masks to take that extra safety precaution, we would welcome that.”

It is strongly encouraged that unvaccinated individuals wear masks when around others.

The districts are still considering possible virtual options for students.

”We do have a virtual option that we can entertain for middle and high school students,” Superintendent Constant said. “Elementary is really not as large an option at this point, so we will just see what happens with health and safety data, and again make adjustments as we might need to.”

[PREVIOUS: Kentucky Dept. for Public Health releases new K-12 guidance for in-person school]

On Thursday, the Kentucky Department for Public health announced they recommend schools to consider everyone wearing masks.

The districts are also making changes to mitigation plans.

”Vaccinated people will not have to quarantine, unvaccinated people will,” Superintendent Constant said. “So the contact tracing procedures will still remain in place at all of our local schools, and those will be enacted as we have to use those.”

”As we move through, as we saw even through last year, any kind of mitigation strategies, some of those changed with the quarantine procedures,” David Kessler, the Superintendent of the Catholic Diocese of Owensboro said. “It could depend upon the community, but we will follow those same quarantines if a person is not, or unvaccinated, they will have to quarantine.”

Other COVID-19 procedures relating to cleaning, sanitizing, visitation and more are outlined in each school district’s individual reopening plans, which are linked above.

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