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Mask mandate begins Tuesday for Mingo County

Published: Sep. 13, 2021 at 7:21 PM EDT
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UPDATE 9/13/21 @ 10 p.m.

MINGO COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) – The Mingo County Board of Education voted 4-1 Monday evening to require masks at schools.

The county started the school year last week with masks optional, but after seeing hundreds of students having to quarantine, board members decided to go this route to keep schools open and avoid going back to remote learning.

“We haven’t seen this thing peak yet,” Keith Blankenship, the director of the Mingo County Health Department, told board members at the meeting. “We’re told we’re looking at another few weeks.”

Mingo Central High School already went to remote learning Monday and Tuesday of this week due to an outbreak there.

“No matter how people feel about masking, we do know it would take the number of quarantines down based on the current state guidance,” Superintendent Dr. Johnny Branch said.

Masks would not be required if the county falls into the green or yellow categories on the state’s COVID-19 color map.

The board will reevaluate the policy Oct. 19 or earlier if case numbers significantly drop before then.

Sabrina Grace was the lone board member who voted against the policy, but she said she only voted against it because she wanted masks to not be required if the county were to also fall into the gold category on the map, not just the yellow or green.

Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.

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