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Fort Zumwalt school board votes to lift mask mandate, adopt tiered mitigation strategies

The mitigation strategies change depending on the percentage of COVID-positive students at each school

ST. CHARLES COUNTY, Mo. — The Fort Zumwalt Board of Education voted unanimously Tuesday to lift a mask mandate put in place last month.

The board voted 6-0 to lift the mask mandate. The district also adopted a modified quarantine program that would allow for students who were wearing a mask at the time of exposure to continue to attend classes as long as they monitor their symptoms for the next 14 days.

Students in the modified quarantine program will not be allowed to participate in extra-curricular activities during the quarantine period.

The modified quarantine time can be reduced to seven days if the student does not have symptoms after five days and received a negative test from an authorized testing site.

In addition to a quarantine change, the school board announced a tiered mitigation strategy. 

The strategy calls for any classroom that sees an increase of three cases over 14 days to require masks for two weeks following the most recent positive case. 

Additionally, schools with more than 2% of students testing positive for COVID-19 would have more mitigation strategies like wearing masks while in the school building but outside of classrooms and offering more lunch periods to allow for social distancing. The strategies would remain in place until the number of students testing positive can return to below 2% for 14 consecutive days. 

If the number of students testing positive reaches 4%, students and teachers would be required to wear masks at all times while inside school buildings. Those measures would stay in place until the number of students testing positive returns to below 2% for 14 consecutive days.

The new rules will go into effect on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

You can watch the meeting on YouTube here.