Central HS board extends mask requirement and virtual Wednesdays

The Central High School District of Westosha Board of Education on Tuesday extended its facial covering requirement through summer school and kept virtual learning Wednesdays through the end of the year.

Both measures were implemented as COVID-19 mitigation measures at the beginning of the current school year.

Virtual Wednesdays were initially only set through the beginning of Spring Break. But Tuesday, district administrator John Gendron said staff has felt they were constructive and suggested that distance learning for all students on Wednesdays continue through the end of the current school year, with a few exceptions.

“We believe that the┬ávirtual Wednesday platform has benefited students,” Gendron said.

The board approved the change unanimously.

There are some exceptions to virtual Wednesdays that were part of the extension. Three Wednesdays in April will be used for Aspire testing for freshman and sophomore students. March 10 also will be a face-to-face instructional day for all students.

On face coverings, which health officials say help control the spread of COVID-19, the board voted to keep the school’s requirement in place through the end of summer school.

This action was prompted by the back and forth treatment of the issue in the state government, Gendron said.

The state legislature has been in favor of removing mask mandates and the governor has enacted mask mandates.

By the board establishing a policy, the district will not have to worry about where the issue stands in the state government, Gendron explained.

“Our kids have been fantastic,” Gendron said, adding that he personally has only had one student give him a hard time about wearing a face covering in school.

Though Gendron recommended an extension through the end of the current school year, board memebrs favored extending it through summer school.

“If something were to change we could revisit it,” said board President Steve Richter.

The face covering policy extension passed unanimously.

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