Masks up Giants!


Briana Del Rio, staff writer

During the whole pandemic the usage of masks has been important, but as more people have been getting  vaccinated the mask mandate has been all over the place.

At the beginning of this year many counties around us dropped their mandate while we still had one set, for example, Marion county was still strict with masks while Hendricks county had lifted theirs. As the time passed Marion county lifted the mask mandate on June 7 for all vaccinated individuals only requiring a mask if going into a business with mask requirements or using public transportation like the Indianapolis International airport.

As the summer continued mask requirements for the unvaccinated got more lenient, on July 1 the mandate was lifted and only suggested if not able to social distance. As the beginning of the school year started to approach the discussion of mask requirements started to come up. The CDC released a statement stating, “Prevention measures are still recommended for unvaccinated people. CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status. Children should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with proper prevention strategies in place.”

Then on June 27th the Marion County Public Health Department recommended everyone k-12 schools to wear a mask regardless of vaccination status due to the Delta Variant but they did not mandate it due to a Health Order.

Since the school year started with not requiring masks, just a little over a week into the school many students have been sent home to quarantine due to being exposed to covid. By the end of the week of August 6 there had been about 398 staff and students quarantined and 10 positive covid cases. On Monday August 9, Dr.Butts held a school board meeting that determined masks will be required until further notice starting Wednesday August 11,2021.

As the numbers of positive covid cases and staff and students quarantined continue to rise, and if cases don’t start lowering we could possibly be heading back to the Hybrid scheduling or even shutting down and going virtual. If numbers keep rising at the rate that they are, schools might be forced to end up canceling events like homecoming, prom and graduation.

So staff and students mask up and social distance so we could try to give seniors a great “normal”  last school year and be able to give them a homecoming, prom and graduation.