LOS ANGELES (CNS) — After initially resisting county guidance regarding mask-wearing outdoors, the Los Angeles Unified School District dropped its COVID-19 mandate that students and staff wear face coverings while outside on campuses on Tuesday, Feb. 22.
Superintendent Alberto Carvalho made the announcement of ending the mandate on Feb. 18, posting revised district guidance online. The new rules state that “outdoor masking will be optional for all individuals in Los Angeles Unified schools” effective Tuesday.
The rules noted that while schools were closed Monday for the Presidents Day holiday, anyone on campuses that day for athletic activities could also go without masks outdoors.
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Feb. 16 lifted its outdoor mask-wearing mandate for mega-events and for schools and child care centers, citing plummeting COVID hospitalization numbers and an apparent end to the winter surge of virus infections.
But Carvalho took some heat when the LAUSD initially opted to keep the outdoor masking rule in place through the end of the week. He said the district wanted to take a few days to transition to the new rule and properly inform labor partners, parents and staff.