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Ottawa's largest school board to again consider mandatory masks for K-3 students

When trustees approved the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board's face mask policy in late August, masks were made mandatory for students in grades 4 through 12 but "strongly recommended" for students in Kindergarten through Grade 3.
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Photo: Face masks / Getty Images

With Ottawa seeing a surge in COVID-19 case numbers, and testing demands surge since the return to classes, Ottawa's English public school board will decide whether to make masks mandatory for its youngest students.

When trustees approved the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board's face mask policy in late August, masks were made mandatory for students in grades 4 through 12 when indoors at school, whether in class or in hallways, as well as while on board school transportation.

The board "strongly recommended" face coverings be worn by students in Kindergarten through Grade 3.

A motion, proposed by Barrhaven-Knoxdale-Merivale Trustee Donna Blackburn, would amend the board's mask policy to make masks mandatory for all grades.

The amendment cites parents' concerns that masks are not mandatory for children in younger grades, as well as the recent rise in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases. It also points to the medical officer of health's statement, last week, that Ottawa is in a second wave of COVID-19.

The board will consider the amendment at its next meeting, Tuesday evening.





Jason White

About the Author: Jason White

Jason is an award-winning reporter at CityNews Ottawa. He brings about two decades of experience in news, with stops in Halifax and Toronto.
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