Face masks to be worn by children, adults in schools

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HARRISBURG, DAUPHIN COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Pennsylvania’s mandatory mask order applies to schools. The order, signed by the governor and the secretary of health, impacts both children and adults in schools across the commonwealth.

The order applies to all staff and students in all schools public and private. The Department of Education says students and staff are required to wear masks because they count as members of the public gathering indoors.

But Pennsylvanians have some concerns about the mandate.

“They’re not going to wear them. They won’t do it. You can’t even get these kids to do their board work, much less wear a mask,” said Linda Ritter, a former teacher’s assistant.

“Especially with the younger kids it’s difficult, it’s uncomfortable. Little kids don’t like to be uncomfortable. They’ll throw fits, even with high schoolers they could have an issue with it,” said Ivy Baier a direct support professional.

One local parent is considering other schooling options.

“I’m leaning right now towards homeschooling my kids. I don’t think I want my kid wearing a mask all day long,” said Joseph Ramos.

The Kingston resident says he’s waiting to hear more information before making a final decision.

“Are they giving us options to be able to do distance learning? Are kids going to go to school three days a week, two days a week?” said Ramos.

Students can take their masks off if they’re eating and drinking when six feet apart, if they’re seated at desks or work spaces at least six feet apart and if they’re social distancing, including at recess. The order requiring universal face coverings went into effect July 1st to avoid community spread of COVID-19.

“I do believe it will be beneficial with preventing the spread of the virus but regarding health issues, Asthma, COPD,” said Ivy Baier.

There are exceptions that can be found in the order. For example, people with medical conditions and children under two are exempt from wearing a mask. For all the details, Click Here.

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