Vermont: Masks no longer required in schools

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Vermont just reached its 80% vaccination goal, and COVID-19 guidance has changed for schools in the Green Mountain State.

According to the Department of Health’s website, there are no COVID-19 restrictions for schools to follow, and masks are not required in schools.

However, since the COVID-19 vaccine is not available to children under the age of 12, the Department of Health is still recommending the use of masks for unvaccinated people.

The updated guidance took effect on Tuesday. Many Vermont schools have already finished for the year, so most students won’t experience any changes until the fall.

NewsChannel 13’s NBC affiliate spoke with Amy Minor, superintendent of the Colchester School District, about the guidance.

While students in the district have already left for summer vacation, Minor says it was wonderful to see the faces of staff members.

However, she says she still has a lot of questions about the state’s guidance.

"Will contact tracing still occur? What about outside? Is potting still a recommendation? We’re just looking for further clarity around all the mitigation strategies. And do we need to continue to follow those, or do those go away at this point in time?" Minor questioned.

The president of the Vermont National Education Association is also weighing in. He says many of his members have concerns about the health and safety of younger students who haven’t been able to get the vaccine.

Like Minor, he is also hoping for more clarity from the state.

In New York, Gov. Cuomo is still requiring masks in schools. The move has received criticism from some parents and school administrators.