School mask order enacted in Tooele County for schools meeting case threshold

Coronavirus Updates

(file/MGN photo)

TOOELE, Utah (ABC4) – Students in Tooele County will have to wear masks under a new health order issued by the health department. If schools reach a COVID-19 case threshold, students and staff will have to wear masks for 30 days.

The Tooele County Health Department issued the public health order Thursday, setting a threshold for when schools will need to require masks. A school with 1,500 or more students meets the case threshold if at least 2% of the school’s students test positive for COVID-19. Schools with fewer than 1,500 students meet the case threshold if 30 or more of the school’s students test positive.

According to the health department, a student is included in positive cases for the school if the student within the last 14 days – attended at least some in-person instruction at the school and tested positive for COVID-19.

“Children can and do get COVID-19 and are at risk for severe illness from the virus,” the Tooele County Health Department says. “Even when the illness isn’t severe, children may suffer from long-term health effects and may spread the virus to other people. COVID-19 also severely disrupts learning, school attendance, and involvement in extracurricular activities.”

Currently, there are about 30,700 people in Tooele County are fully vaccinated. The health department says children between 12 and 17 have low vaccination rates.

Tooele County isn’t the only jurisdiction with a masking requirement in place for schools – Salt Lake City and Grand County have also issued mask-wearing rules.

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