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Data encourages Sylacauga Schools to switch from mandatory to recommended masking

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Face masks(WRDW)
Published: Oct. 20, 2021 at 10:13 AM CDT
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SYLACAUGA, Ala. (WBRC) - The Alabama Department of Health is strongly recommending universal masking in all schools. Although cases of Covid-19 are decreasing across our state, officials say there are still high and moderate levels in majority of our counties.

Wes Stubblefield, former President of the Alabama Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and now an ADPH Medical Officer, states, “As data continue to show the safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine in children, we urge parents to consider vaccinating those who fall in the eligible groups after a discussion with their health care provider.”

The mask mandate in Sylacauga City Schools expired on October 8th. Superintendent Dr. Michelle Eller says as of last week they had 0 positive cases throughout their schools which is why they are currently only strongly encouraging masks.

The mandate went into effect August 25th. Eller says since then the numbers of Covid have steadily declined. They provide parents with weekly updates on positive cases. The Sylacauga City School board has members in the medical field who keep up with cases throughout Talladega County.

“We’re fortunate to have a pediatrician and the head of nursing at the Coosa Valley Medical center. They keep me informed on cases in the community. Cases in the county. So as we began to see our community numbers drop. As we began to see the hospital numbers drop. Then of course saw our numbers ourselves drop then we felt very safe with in lifting the mandate on the 8th.”

Dr. Eller says her top priority is keeping students healthy and in school for in person learning. If there is a rise in Covid cases, she says they will look at plans to change the policies on masks.

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