New York City's requirement for public school students and staff to wear masks while outdoors on school grounds will cease at the end of the month, education officials announced on Friday.
Starting next week, students and staff will have the option of removing their masks once they are outside for recess or gym classes. They will still be required to wear a mask while indoors due to mandates from the city and the state.
"Throughout the pandemic, our schools have remained some of the safest spaces for our students and staff, thanks to our gold standard health and safety protocol," Schools Chancellor David Banks said in a statement, according to Spectrum News in New York. "I am so pleased that we are able to make this exciting announcement and safely allow students and staff to remove their masks when outdoors at NYC public schools."
New York City Mayor Eric Adams told "Mornings On 1" on Friday that his administration will keep following the science when it comes to COVID-19 restrictions.
"You saw the schools chancellor stated that no more masks outdoors and we are going to eventually, in the next few weeks, look at releasing some of the other mandates that are in place," Adams said.
Staten Island Borough President Vito Fossella said in a statement that New York City and state leaders should end the mask mandate for students.
"COVID cases in New York have declined dramatically," Fossella said. "We've passed the point where New York can eliminate the mandates, make masks optional, and give our kids back the freedom to learn, socialize, and enjoy being kids."
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