Wissahickon’s superintendent to recommend universal masking for students and staff

In an email/letter today, Wissahickon School District Superintendent Dr. James Crisfield announced that he will be recommending to the school board that the district amend its Health and Safety Plan to require all students and staff to wear masks. The recommendation will be considered during the August 23rd board meeting.

The previously adopted plan only required masks for grades kindergarten through sixth grade.

Below is the text of the email.

At the 8/23/21 public Board meeting, I will be recommending that we amend our Health and Safety Plan to require universal masking, Grades K-12, for both students and staff.  There will be opportunity for the Board to discuss the matter, as well as for public comments, before a vote is taken.  As you know, we have in place now a universal masking requirement in Grades K-6, and a combination of factors is driving the new recommendation.  Not only are two recently revised agency guidelines (both CDC and Montco OPH) now recommending the K-12 approach in the face of the aggressive “Delta” variant, but new rules regarding which students would have to stay home from school in quarantine status have convinced me that the benefits of masking in these older grades now outweigh the objections.  Details of these new quarantine rules can be found in our FAQ webpage (see below), but suffice it to say here that our #1 goal is to keep students and staff safe AND to have as many students learning, IN-PERSON, as possible.  Universal masking, K-12, however controversial it may be, simply gets us much closer to both goals.

Last week, Governor Tom Wolf stated he would not issue a mandate on masking in schools, but encouraged individual districts to follow CDC recommendations.

You can view the full text of the email/letter and links mentioned in block quote here.