One of the first actions by Virginia's newly-installed Republican governor Glenn Youngkin was to lift mask mandates in Virginia schools.
Left-leaning Arlington County, Virginia was quick to issue a press release saying: no go.
Read the Arlington County press release below and watch the WTOP exclusive reaction from Youngkin.
No Change to Current APS Mask Requirements – Masks Required Inside on School Grounds and on Buses
Posted on January 15, 2022 at 5:22 pm.
Arlington Public Schools will continue to require all staff and students to wear masks inside on school grounds and on buses, as part of our layered approach to safety. Universal mask use has proven effective in keeping COVID-19 transmission rates low in our schools and ensuring schools remain safe and open.
Arlington Public Schools implemented our mask requirement this school year prior to Governor Northam’s K-12 mask mandate, and we will continue to make decisions that prioritize the health, safety and wellbeing of our students and staff, following the guidance of local and national health professionals.Current law in Virginia, per SB1303, says: school divisions need to “provide such in-person instruction in a manner in which it adheres, to the maximum extent practicable, to any currently applicable mitigation strategies for early childhood care and education programs and elementary and secondary schools to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 that have been provided by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
The federal requirement from February 2, 2021, is still in place on all forms of public transportation. Anyone riding a school bus is therefore required to wear a mask when riding on our school buses to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Exclusive: Governor Youngkin on Arlington school system saying it will require masks, despite Youngkin’s order stating that schools can’t do that. He threatened to use state resources to force schools to comply - but we still don’t know what that means exactly. @WTOP https://t.co/5Lijz9kbgd pic.twitter.com/SnC4dcCIar
— Nick Iannelli (@NickWTOP) January 16, 2022