The Eau Claire Area School District administration is recommending that students and staff be required to wear masks at all times in school buildings.
The district is proposing the policy change based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which strongly recommends all Americans wear face coverings when in public to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The ECASD Board of Education will consider the policy on Aug. 3. It would mandate, with a few exceptions, that all staff and students in grades K-12 wear masks.
The first day of school for ECASD students is Tuesday, Sept. 1. The district plans to start the school year with a hybrid model that combines in-person and remote learning while also offering a full virtual learning option.
"We understand that the wearing of cloth face coverings may be inconvenient for our students, staff and families," said Michael Johnson, ECASD superintendent in a Friday evening news release. "We also realize that there may be select individuals who cannot wear a mask safely. We will treat those situations with great care and concern. However, we believe it is the responsible action to take in the interest of minimizing risks for everyone in our school buildings, as well as the people they interact with outside of school. We sincerely appreciate our school community's cooperation with this policy. If we all do our part, we can protect public health and help ensure we can proceed with our hybrid learning model this school year."