UPDATE ON BUS MASK MANDATE
UPDATE ON MASK MANDATE FOR BUSES:
On January 21, 2021, President Biden signed Executive Order No. 13998, “Promoting COVID-19 Safety in Domestic and International Travel.” It orders “Immediate Action to Require Mask wearing on Certain Domestic Modes of Transportation.” Gordon County Schools’ officials discussed this order with Board of Education members during their open meeting on February 9. Since then, there has been much additional discussion state-wide as to how this should impact the protocols school systems already have in place regarding this issue. "The executive order mandates masks on conveyances, but there are differing opinions as to how it relates to pupil transportation," stated Matt Cordoza, Director of Public Affairs for the Georgia Department of Education, in his February 10 email to superintendents across the state. At this time, there is still not a clear order from the state on how this will impact bus transportation in public school systems.
Given the current uncertainty, Gordon County Schools will continue to follow the same protocols that have been in place for the entirety of the school year, until further mandates are provided. These protocols include strongly encouraging face coverings on buses, as well as on school campuses when distancing cannot be achieved. The school system will, however, use this opportunity to remind stakeholders that the use of face coverings is an important measure in mitigating the spread of the virus. Staff and students, whether on the bus or in classrooms, will see a renewed emphasis on these measures as the 2020-2021 school year comes to a close.