Coronavirus/COVID-19NewsWatauga County Schools

Masks no longer required on school buses, Watauga Schools go masks optional starting Monday

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Last Updated on February 27, 2022 7:00 pm

More changes will occur this week regarding masks-wearing, or rather the not wearing of masks in schools and on buses.

On Friday, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that masks will no longer be required on school buses or vans. The CDC said the change was made to align with the updated guidance that no longer recommends indoor masking for K-12 schools and early education settings in areas with a low or medium spread of the virus. “Effective February 25, 2022, CDC does not require wearing of masks on buses or vans operated by public or private school systems, including early care and education/child care programs.”, the agency posted online.

Dr. Scott Elliott, Superintendent of Watauga County Schools, sent out an email to parents/guardians on Sunday evening alerting them to the change. “By now we all are aware of the wide range of needs and differences of opinion about all aspects of this pandemic. I ask that all of us continue to support one another, find and show empathy and kindness to those whose needs and opinions might differ from our own, and respect the choices of each individual for the decision they make regarding masks.”, he stated.

The Watauga County School Board of Education voted unanimously on Tuesday to make the wearing of masks optional beginning tomorrow (Monday, February 28, 2022).

The school system would like to remind everyone that they have a large supply of high-quality masks for any students or staff members who would like them.

The school system will continue to collaborate with local medical providers to provide vaccine and booster shot clinics to school age children. Upcoming clinics will be held on the following dates:

Date and TimeSchool #1School #2
Thursday 3/3 1:30-3:30Green ValleyBethel
Friday 3/4 1:30 – 3:30ParkwayWHS All Day until 5:30 
Thursday 3/10 1:30 – 3:30Mabel

Parents will continue to need to give permission to the school nurse if your child needs a COVID test at school. This includes testing available for when a student is a close contact or when they are exhibiting symptoms. All testing is free, optional, and requires parent permission. 

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