When students in Genesee County return to school after the Labor Day weekend, they'll be required to wear face masks.

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The Genesee County Health Department issued the order today (Thurs. 9/2) which expands its mask mandate to include students in Pre-K and 7th through 12th grades. The order includes all staff members and classroom volunteers.

The new mandate goes into effect on September 7, when most schools resume after the long Labor Day weekend.

The previous mandate, issued on August 12, included all staff students in elementary grades K through sixth grade. The new order supersedes (or expands) that order to now include all students, staff, and volunteers in Pre-K and 7th through 12th grade.

No End Date for the New Mandate Has Been Determined

Reports indicate that the new mask mandate for Genesee County will remain in effect until the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention deems that the risk the spread of COVID-19 is reduced to 'moderate or low.' Genesee County is currently at high risk for the spread of disease, according to the CDC.

The FDA has not yet approved COVID-19 vaccinations for children age 5 through 11.
According to the CDC:

"Given new evidence on the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant, CDC has updated the guidance for fully vaccinated people. CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. Children should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with layered prevention strategies in place."

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