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Optional masks and return of extra-curriculars this school year (update)

With isolation no longer a requirement, it appears there's nothing to stop a parent from sending a COVID-infected student to school
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When students return to classroom next month, masks will continue to be optional, as they were when school let out.

However, since that time, Nova Scotia has lifted the requirement for those infected with the virus to self-isolate.

And as it stands now, it appears there's nothing to stop a child with an active case of COVID-19 from continuing to go to class.

When CityNews Halifax asked the Department of Education if there would be any requirement for parents to keep a child who has tested positive at home, we were given the following response.

"We encourage schools, staff and students to embrace healthy habits, including maintaining good hygiene to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other illnesses," said department spokesperson Susan Mader Zinck in an email. 

"It continues to be the best practice for individuals to stay home when they are feeling unwell or sick. More information on what to do if you are feeling unwell can be found here: ."

The province officially confirmed there would be no mandatory mask requirement earlier Wednesday, a decision it said was made in consultation with Public Health.

A full range of activities will also be resuming, including small-group instruction, band, clubs, sports and field trips.

“This is an exciting time of year for students, especially now with a return of extra-curriculars that are so vital to the education experience. As always, we keep safety and the health of our students and staff as our highest priority and will remain in close contact with Public Health,” said Becky Druhan, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development. 

Schools will continue to have hand sanitizer available and masks for those who choose to wear them.

Even though masks will be optional for public school students, they will be required in classrooms at several local post-secondary schools including Mount Saint Vincent University, Dalhousie University and St. Mary's University.

University of King's College also has a mask mandate in effect for all indoor common spaces on campus until at least September 18.

Meghan Groff

About the Author: Meghan Groff

Born in Michigan, raised in Ontario, schooled in Indiana and lives in Nova Scotia; Meghan is the editor for CityNews Halifax.
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