The district originally dropped its mandate in November, only to reinstate it after the winter break as the omicron surge swept through northeast Ohio.
PARMA, Ohio — As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to decline in Cuyahoga County, the Parma City School District suspended its mask mandate for students and teachers, effective Thursday afternoon.
The district made the decision to drop the mandate because it remained “committed to monitoring data and evolving as conditions change.” Currently, only three students and one staff member cannot attend classes in person due to the coronavirus.
“We are extremely hopeful that we will not have to revisit this measure in the future,” the district said in a statement, “but we have learned too often that we can never guarantee anything with respect to COVID.”
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Indeed, Parma Schools initially dropped its tenure in November, only to reinstate it after the winter break as the omicron surge swept through northeast Ohio. Governor Mike DeWine had urged school districts to require masks for students and staff indoors, but had not ordered them to do so.
All children at least 5 years old (i.e. virtually all children attending public schools in Parma) are eligible to receive Pfizer’s COVID vaccines. However, as of February 10, only 31% of Cuyahoga County residents under the age of 20 have been vaccinated.
Due to federal regulations, students will still be required to wear masks on school buses until further notice. Since the state began tracking numbers in mid-2020, 370 Parma students and 215 staff have contracted COVID-19.
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