CEDAR SPRINGS, Mich. (WOOD) — Districts across West Michigan are preparing for the start of a new school year, many having to quickly adjust as health departments release new guidelines.
Cedar Springs Public Schools Superintendent Scott Smith said originally the district was leaving the decision of whether to send kids to school with a mask up to parents, but they’ll now have to follow a new order from the Kent County Health Department. Masks must be worn by all PreK through 6th graders regardless of vaccination status, with few exceptions.
Smith said district leaders will continue to follow recommendations from the health department, adding that while the beginning of the school year can be a time that brings increased tension and anxiety, the district will do its best and learn from each decision made.
“Ultimately we’re going to maintain open lines of communication with the Kent County Health Department and also maintain open lines of communication with our students and our families because it’s a team effort. No one agency can tackle this thing on their own,” Smith said.
Outside of PreK through 6th grade, masks will be optional. Teachers will also be allowed to decide if they want to wear a mask unless the health department says otherwise.