HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – The Cabell County School Board voted Monday to rescind the policy requiring face coverings in schools.
The 3-2 vote made face coverings on school properties optional with immediate effect.
The decision comes as West Virginia’s coronavirus count continues to decline. The state Department of Health and Human Resources reported 4,665 active coronavirus cases Monday and 645 West Virginians hospitalized with the coronavirus, including 15 pediatric patients.
“It’s reflected in the positivity rate in our schools,” Cabell County Schools Superintendent Ryan Saxe told MetroNews.
According to Saxony, the school system registered 15 new cases of the coronavirus on Monday. He noted that data from late January showed an average number of daily cases in the 40s.
“One of the things we’ve been able to prove throughout this pandemic is that our schools are very safe. In Cabell County, we haven’t had any major events where we had to close a school for an extended period of the school year due to an epidemic,” he added.
“We were able to, I think, weather most of the storm, and now that we are on a downtrend, the board wanted to consider a measure to move forward and lift this requirement so that we can try to have one more step towards a more normal school year for our students.
Cabell County Schools joins the list of school systems that have repealed mask policies in the past month. Schools in Kanawha County — the state’s largest district — announced last Tuesday that face coverings were optional.