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St. Johns County Schools not requiring masks for 2021-22 school year

Superintendent Tim Forson sent a letter out to parents and community members announcing changes to the district's COVID-19 safety protocols.

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. — St. Johns County Schools will not require students and employees to wear face masks next school year, the district announced Friday.

Superintendent Tim Forson sent a letter out to parents and community members announcing changes to the district's COVID-19 safety protocols.

The changes will begin with summer programs on June 14 and remain into the 2021-2022 school year.

"Face masks will be recommended, but optional in school and on SJCSD transportation," Forson wrote in the letter.

Forson also stated that desk shields will no longer be mandatory in classrooms but will be used as needed for "health and safety protection or instructional/assessment purposes."

The district will continue with enhanced sanitation practices, however, temperature checks will no longer be a daily routine when students, staff or visitors arrive at school.

Additionally, athletics and extracurricular activities will occur next school year.  

Forson stated that protocols for those activities will be adjusted as the district receives guidance from state and local agencies.

Read the full letter below.

Dear St. Johns County Schools parents and community members,

I would like to thank every family associated with the SJC school district this year. This has been a unique and challenging school year. We are in the final four weeks of the year and your support has been critical to the success students have experienced. We still have numerous high stakes assessments to administer and feel that it is imperative that we maintain our expectations and way of work until the last day of school on June 10.

We are all fatigued from the experience of the pandemic and staff members have worked tirelessly to support children in our schools. Throughout this public health crisis, we have utilized guidance and recommendations of federal, state, and local public health agencies. As we continue to follow the guidance of the CDC, I would like to share our intent moving forward so that families are informed about the school health and safety protocols for this summer and next school year.

Beginning with summer programs on June 14 and going into the 2021-2022 school year, the SJCSD will transition to the following health and safety procedures:

  • Face masks will be recommended, but optional in school and on SJCSD transportation
  • Desk shields will no longer be a mandatory feature of all classrooms but will be used as appropriate when needed for health and safety protection or instructional/assessment purposes
  • Temperature checks will no longer be a daily routine when students, staff or visitors arrive at school
  • Enhanced sanitation practices will continue in our facilities to ensure clean, healthy schools
  • Athletics, events, plays/performances, and dances will occur next school year. Protocols will be adjusted as we receive guidance from FHSAA and other state and local agencies.

We will maintain these procedures barring any future emergency orders or crisis events. Again, thank you for your continued support this school year.

Sincerely,

Tim Forson