LAUSD to lift outdoor mask mandate for students, staff on Tuesday

City News Service
Saturday, February 19, 2022
LAUSD to lift outdoor mask mandate for students, staff on Tuesday
LAUSD will drop its outdoor mask-wearing mandate for students and staff at campuses on Tuesday, Superintendent Alberto Carvalho announced.

LOS ANGELES (CNS) -- After initially resisting county guidance regarding mask-wearing outdoors, the Los Angeles Unified School District on Tuesday will drop its COVID-19 mandate that students and staff wear face coverings while outside on campuses.

Superintendent Alberto Carvalho made the announcement late Friday, posting revised district guidance online. The new rules state that "outdoor masking will be optional for all individuals in Los Angeles Unified schools effective February 22, 2022."

The rules noted that while schools are closed Monday for the Presidents Day holiday, anyone on campuses that day for athletic activities can also do so without masks.

Carvalho had indicated earlier this week that the mask mandate would likely be lifted by Tuesday.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Wednesday lifted its outdoor mask-wearing mandate for mega-events and for schools and child-care centers, citing plummeting COVID hospitalization numbers and an apparent end to the winter surge of virus infections.

But Carvalho took some heat when the LAUSD initially opted to keep the outdoor masking rule in place through the end of the week. He said the district wanted to take a few days to transition to the new rule and properly inform labor partners, parents and staff.

Although L.A. County's lifting of the outdoor mask-wearing requirement applies to schools, LAUSD is keeping the rule in place for the rest of the week. But the mandate could be dropped as early as next week.