Elizabethton City Schools provides update on current mask mandate

Published 5:20 pm Thursday, September 30, 2021

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Elizabethton City School Board opted this week to continue an opt-out mask mandate for schools and students.

The board met earlier this week and reviewed the mask mandate which was put in place in August.

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“We implemented the mask mandate for the school system during our regularly scheduled meeting for the month of August, and on August 30 we held a called meeting where we heard from the public and kept the mandate in effect while addressing quarantine protocols,” said Richard VanHuss, superintendent. “During this month’s meeting, we sat down and addressed COVID protocols within the system, and decided to keep the mask mandate with the option of opting out as well as the quarantine protocols in effect until we feel that it needs to be re-addressed.”

Those quarantine protocols that were revised focused on contact tracing of students, allowing them to return to school after being informed of close contact if they do not feel ill or have any symptoms, while also requiring those students to conduct a wellness check with the nurse each day until the regular quarantine period was over.

The mask mandate and all other measures that are being taken by the Elizabethton City School System seem to be working, he said. “As of the end of the school day on Wednesday, we only had 15 total cases throughout the whole school system. We are continuing to go down in numbers and we feel like everything that we are doing is working.”

VanHuss said the school board also has placed an emphasis on good hygiene, hand washing, social distancing to the best of their ability, and mask wearing for those who choose that option.