APS updates masking guidance, starts Monday

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(ABC 6 News) – The Austin School Board approved an updated masking policy for the Austin Public Schools.

Beginning February 21, if county data is above the threshold of positive case rates of 100/100,000, indicating High community spread, AND school level absence rates are above the typical monthly average by 100% or more, masks will be required at that site for the next week.

If both indicators are not met, masks will ONLY be recommended. At this time, masks are still required on school transportation per federal mandate.

"Everyone recognizes that you’re going to have the normal attendance issues that you’ve always had. Whether that’s vacation, general illness, due to regular colds and flu. Or, even college visits potentially as things open back up again, so those things will still exist," Director of information services Corey Haugen said.

Contact tracing will only be done if there is a high-risk situation among those not required to wear masks.

The recommendation was approved by the board in a 5 to 2 vote.