West Ada School District extends mask requirement through October 8

West Ada School District
Posted at 2:23 PM, Sep 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-24 16:23:23-04

MERIDIAN, Idaho — The West Ada School District announced Friday it has made the decision to keep the mask requirement through October 8. The mask requirement started on September 10 and applies to all students, staff and visitors.

"We have continued to review our district data, hospital data, and the impact of COVID-19 on our health care systems. Our community is still at a level of high community transmission, and Idaho has expanded its Crisis Standards of Care statewide due to the variant surge," according to a post on the district website.

Related: Drive-up COVID-19 rapid testing available to West Ada School District staff and students

The district says it reviewed their district data, hospital data and the impact of COVID-19 on the healthcare system. During this review process, the district was not able to use Central District Health data as CDH is experiencing a backlog of cases due to the surge in cases.

School administrators and nurses in the district are spending a lot of time doing contact tracing. The district is still experiencing a shortage of qualified substitute teachers with an average of 30 to 35% unfilled substitute jobs daily, according to the website.

The mask requirement will be reviewed again before October 8 to determine whether or not it can be lifted, opt-outs restored or if another extension is needed. The district says it will evaluate conditions and look at data before the mask policy is set to expire as they make decisions for the rest of the semester.