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September 28, 2021
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Utah health department ‘strongly’ recommends indoor masking for K-12 students

A third grade classroom at Parkview Elementary School in Salt Lake City sits empty on the first day of school as students attend classes online on Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020. The Utah Department of Health announced Monday it is strongly encouraging students in K-12 schools to wear masks and physical distance when indoors this coming school year. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Department of Health announced Monday it is strongly encouraging students in K-12 schools to wear masks and physical distance when indoors this coming school year.

“We strongly recommend local health departments and schools use a layered prevention approach, including encouraging vaccination and mask wearing, among other strategies,” said Dr. Michelle Hofmann, deputy director of the health department, in a statement. “Doing so can help minimize the disruptions of COVID-19 on schools while maximizing opportunities for children to participate in in-person learning and extracurricular activities.”

Officials issued the following list of guidelines for schools:

  • Encouraging everyone 12 years and older to get vaccinated for COVID-19
  • Wearing a mask when indoors
  • Isolating at home if you test positive for COVID-19
  • Quarantine and other protective measures after a school exposure
  • Testing for COVID-19
  • Staying home when you’re sick
  • Physical distancing and cohorting
  • Improving or increasing indoor ventilation
  • Hygiene practices
  • Cleaning and disinfection

This story will be updated.

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