Masks will now be required in Tipton County’s public schools, the district announced Friday morning.
Re-entry plans previously included a recommendation, or encouragement, but not a mandate.
After discussions with our County Executive, as well as, updated recommendations from the Health Dept, LeBonheur, and the UT HSC – we agree that masks are an appropriate next step to slow the spread of COVID 19. Masks will be required in @TCSchools_ . (cont.)
— Tipton Co Schools (@TCSchools_) July 31, 2020
Superintendent Dr. John Combs said he hopes masks and social distancing would help keep schools open for face-to-face learning with a longer timeline.
Last week, the Tennessee Department of Health released datasets on confirmed cases by age group for each of the state’s 95 counties. Also included was data on confirmed cases in school age children.
In the last week, the number of school age children who’ve had positive COVID-19 tests has increased from 45 to 74.
According to the White House COVID Task Force standards and the Harvard Global Health Initiative, Tipton County is in a red zone for risk level. Confirmed cases in all age groups have increased by 70 percent this month and active cases are at an all-time high.
On Monday, teachers are set to report for two weeks of in-service prior to the start of the 2020-21 school year on Aug. 17.
The district released its re-entry plans earlier this month.