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Kearney Public Schools to begin requiring masks

Indoors face covering mandate for all KPS PK-12 students and staff
Kearney Public Schools starting mask mandate on Tuesday, September 7.
Kearney Public Schools starting mask mandate on Tuesday, September 7.(KSNB)
Published: Sep. 1, 2021 at 7:55 PM CDT
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NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) - The Superintendent of Public Schools in Kearney sent a letter to parents and stakeholders of Kearney Public Schools, directing their attention to a mask mandate beginning in the city as of Tuesday, September 7.

The letter in part reading:

  Dr. Edwards explaining the mandate should, “give our school system and local health officials the time needed to determine if we are effectively slowing the spread of the COVID Delta variant.  We hope this will also take some pressure off of our local clinics and hospitals which are at capacity with COVID, RSV, and other illnesses.”

The district will remain in the green zone during this required mandate unless even greater issues are seen, adding the need for more extensive strategies beyond masking.

The COVID Blueprint is located on the website at kearneypublicschools.org.

Specifically, the following actions will be in place until at least October 15, 2021 regardless of vaccination status:

Required Face Coverings

  • Allowable face coverings include masks, face shields, and gaiters
  • If a student, staff member, or visitor does not have a mask, one will be provided to them.

Indoor Activities/Sports/Events

  • All students and staff will be required to wear a face covering inside the school and at indoor activities or events, unless actively involved in athletic competition or a PE class, or eating/drinking at lunch/snack time.
  • All students and staff will be required to wear a face covering when they are being transported on a bus.
  • All visitors to KPS buildings during the school day or attending indoor events after the school day will be required to wear a face covering.

Outdoor Activities/Sports/Events

  • Students and staff will be able to remove face coverings outdoors and keep social distance when possible at activities, recess, etc.
  • Visitors are recommended but not required to wear face coverings at outdoor activities and efforts to socially distance should be used.

Exclusions/Readmittance

  • Students and staff will not be quarantined due to close contact with a COVID-positive person as we will have masking in place to prevent close contacts.
  • The KPS Exclusion and Readmittance Plan in the COVID plan at kearneypublicschools.org will be followed to determine when students and staff will be sent home due to illness.
  • Students and staff who report illnesses to their building or who are sent home due to illness, will be required to stay home until they are symptom-free without medications for 24 hours.
  • Students and staff face-covering exemptions from the 2020-2021 school year will be recognized this school year.
  • Remote Learning will not be offered by the district at this time.

The district will continue to monitor the local health situation and make further announcements on an extension or termination of the face-covering mandate prior to October 15, 2021.

Copyright 2021 KNOP. All rights reserved.