Summit County Health Director, Dr. Phil Bondurant, has issued a Public Health Order on Saturday regarding a new metrics system to determine when masks should be required in elementary schools.
Under the order, face coverings will be required if a school’s campus, “reaches a two-percent 14-day COVID-19 positivity rate among the total number of students, staff, and faculty.,” according to county officials.
“We recognize there are very strong opinions on both sides of the mask discussion,” Summit County Health Director, Dr. Phil Bondurant said. “Ultimately, I want to provide the safest, healthiest learning environment in Summit County schools for the upcoming school year while allowing for parental choice. Masks are not a fail-proof solution to eliminate COVID-19. However, it is well documented that masks are an effective strategy to minimize illness. This approach allows us to actively monitor the situation and provide interventions before an outbreak occurs. In the end, our goal is to help keep kids in school and mitigate the risk of COVID-19 transmission until vaccines become available for children.”
The new metric system will cover all six schools in Summit County including the Park City School District, North Summit District, and South Summit District.
The metrics being used were determined by a program outlined in the Utah Senate Bill 107. The bill requires that “Summit County schools with 30 active COVID-19 cases over 14 days to implement COVID-19 testing among students for them to return to campus,” according to officials.
The order does not apply to any middle or high schools at this time.
The which would require Summit County schools with 30 active COVID-19 cases over 14 days to implement COVID-19 testing among students for them to return to campus.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Summit County has sought to work in concert with our local and state partners,” Summit County Manager Tom Fisher said. “The Manager’s Office supports the Health Director’s efforts to enact these measures.”
The Public Health Order will take effect starting Wednesday, August 25 and will be reviewed in 30 days.