School Mask Mandate


Libby Engebretson

With the start of the new school year, many students and parents are concerned regarding facial covering policies.

With the start of the 2021-2022 school year, has brought questions from students and parents alike. Specifically, regarding the public health measures in place to protect students and staff from the rampant Delta variant.

Fortunately, these concerns were addressed in the school board meeting that took place on September 2nd. Several members of the community expressed their beliefs on school policies, including Orono High school student Sam Jackson.

“We as a community need to listen to those [epidemiologists and public health leaders] on matters of public health as they have time and time again recommended and stressed the need for masking in schools,” according to Sam Jackson.

Considering both health guidelines from the Center for Disease Control, as well as the general public’s opinion, the Orono school district unanimously passed a resolution requiring masking and delegating authority to the superintendent.

According to this masking policy, students and staff in the high school are required to wear adequate facial coverings from 7:00 am to 3:30 pm. Students riding the school bus are also required to wear a facial covering.

Exceptions for wearing facial coverings can be seen in instances where the students and staff are outdoors, eating/drinking, or through medical exemptions established under the ADA process.

The school board is re-evaluating the mask mandate on the 28th of September when the next meeting is set to occur.