CLAREMORE – In a special 15-minute meeting Thursday night, the Claremore Public Schools Education Board approved a mask requirement for all staff, students and visitors inside buildings in the district.
Since classes began on August 12, Claremore has had 144 students and 12 employees tested positive for COVID-19, prompting 24 additional employees and 1,197 students to self-quarantine.
By comparison, the district had just over 200 students who tested positive during the entire 2020-21 school year.
“I don’t think there will be a change in the guidance from the CDC or the Oklahoma State Department of Health that we have received, so we need to change our procedures,” Superintendent Bryan Frazier said. .
Approved by a 3-0 vote without debate, the new mask requirement goes into effect Wednesday and is limited to regular school hours, as well as parent-teacher conferences. It also extends to anyone riding a Claremore school bus before or after school or for school activities.
Withdrawal forms for families seeking exemptions for religious or medical reasons or because of strong personal beliefs will be available from Friday and are due Wednesday. However, the opt-out provisions will not extend to anyone visiting CPS buildings during school hours.