Diocese of Fall River Catholic Schools to implement mask mandate

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With the recent increase in COVID-19 cases specifically in children, the Diocese of Fall River Catholic Schools Office has issued guidelines to school leaders of the 19 Catholic schools requiring masks to be worn while indoors for all vaccinated and unvaccinated staff and students ages 5 and above. Masks will not be necessary outdoors and may be removed while eating indoors.

In accordance with state and federal mandates, all students and staff will be required to wear masks on school buses and in school health offices. As the school year begins next week, this policy will be in place through October 1, 2021, and will be reevaluated through the coming weeks.

Superintendent Daniel S. Roy comments, “We believe that requiring everyone aged 5 and over to wear a mask while indoors is the most prudent thing to do for the safety of our school communities. We are very aware that this is a fluid situation and we will continue to monitor relevant data and make changes if and when the circumstances dictate. We gained a lot from our year of in-person learning during the 2020-21 school year that will continue to benefit our schools this academic year. Most important is the need for a strong partnership between families and the school community to ensure the safety of students, families, and school staff.”

The pandemic continues to challenge how we do things every day, and while we are optimistic about the school year ahead, we still need to be mindful that it is not over,” indicates Bishop Edgar da Cunha. “Our schools provided wonderful places of in-person education all of last year and we are blessed to have so many committed leaders, faculty and staff who have focused on the well-being of students during this historic event.”

All Catholic schools are expected to be fully open five days a week with no remote learning option. In the event that circumstances dictate a move to remote learning, our Catholic schools will be fully prepared to continue offering the high caliber of Catholic education expected by families.