RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (KVEO) — The state mask mandate will end on March 11, but school districts in the RGV do not plan to stop the precautions they already have in place.
After Governor Greg Abbott announced his plan to end the mask mandate, school districts across the RGV announced they would be sticking with CDC guidelines.
“The things that we think have mitigated the spread of COVID-19. So we know that when you wear a mask and when you wash your hands and practice social distancing, that you know the spread of COVID is less likely.” Says Jill Dominguez, Regional Superintendent, IDEA Public Schools RGV
By law, schools have the right to require masks if they feel it’s in the best health and safety interest of the student.
“We can require anyone in our facilities, and that is how we are planning on proceeding at this time. Should a parent say they just don’t want to wear a mask, that will be mandatory for them to attend any in-person activity,” says Craig Verley, Director of Public Relations and Marketing, Mission CISD.
“It’s kind of like a contract. It’s kind of like a ticket. If you want to go there, then you do it. If you want to keep working there, then you do it.” Says Rick Barrera, Attorney, Barrera Law Firm
On Wednesday, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) announced schools’ policies on maskS may continue unchanged, leaving school boards the authority to decide if mask should be required.
IDEA schools say if a teacher or family does not want to comply with the mask requirement, they will not be allowed on campus.
“I think it’s important to keep everyone healthy and safe. We know the way to get healthy and safe when we’re together at school is to wear a mask and to keep washing your hands, and socially distance, so we’re planning on sticking with those things.” Says Dominguez
The TEA has updated its public health guidance. If you would like to take a look at the full guidelines for yourself, you can click here.