MARYLAND (WDVM) — As many children are about to head back or are already back in the classroom, Maryland’s Board of Education voted to mandate masks in all public schools statewide.
While many jurisdictions in Maryland already had mask mandates for schools in place, five of Maryland’s 24 school systems chose to keep masking optional. Former Senator Gail Bates was the only vote no because she says it’s a one size fits all solution, and would rather it be left up to each district.
The thought behind this decision for those who voted to adopt the universal mask mandate is that this will prevent students from being quarantined if an outbreak occurs, and prevents as many disruptions to students’ learning time.
“We have a commitment if you think about what our colleagues have said… to return children and the staff to a safe environment where they can learn,” said board President Clarence Crawford.
This regulation would only be in effect for 180 days, but it doesn’t have to necessarily last that long. It also will be reassessed monthly. The regulation must be approved by the general assembly’s joint committee on administrative, executive, and legislative review.