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FUSD Governing Board reaffirms, continues face masks requirement while indoors


September 28, 2021

Flagstaff Unified School District governing board reaffirms, continues face mask requirement while indoors on school property

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — The Flagstaff Unified School District’s governing board reaffirmed and continued its previous action requiring the wearing of face masks while indoors on school property today during their regularly scheduled governing board meeting.

This action comes after a judge of the Superior Court of Arizona ruled Sept. 27 that the law prohibiting school districts from requiring masks is void and unenforceable.  School districts that wish to require face masks may lawfully do so unless an emergency stay is issued or another Arizona court rules otherwise.

The face mask requirement is outlined in the school district’s COVID-19 Mitigation Plan and it also allows the school district to exercise the K-12 exception for quarantining. This exception means less students may need to be excluded from school in the event of a positive case of COVID-19 in a class or school.

Michael Penca, superintendent, explained the governing board has the authority to establish policies and procedures to ensure student safety.

“The Flagstaff Unified School District Governing Board and I believe that consistent and layered use of the available mitigation strategies gives us the best chance of protecting the health and safety of our students and staff, and maintaining in-person learning throughout the 2021-2022 school year,” said Penca. “This is especially true due to the highly contagious Delta variant, the high transmission rates of COVID-19 in our local communities, and the inability of many students, especially those under age 12, to receive a COVID-19 vaccine at this time.”

“The Flagstaff Unified School District will keep all students, families and staff apprised of changes to its mitigation plan as needed and will continue its partnership efforts to increase student and staff access to COVID-19 testing and vaccines,” Penca added.

Information about the school district’s Mitigation Plan is available online at