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Masks optional

Summer school students not under requirement
Thursday, May 27, 2021
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The day after the Lincoln Parish School District wrapped up its 2020-21 school year, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced local districts will now be able to craft their own policies about mask-wearing going forward and won’t be required by the state to make the practice mandatory any longer.

While the official policy is still in the works, Superintendent of Schools Ricky Durrett said Wednesday that students will not be required to wear masks during the two sessions of summer school set to begin June 7.

“We’ll make that optional for students,” Durrett said. “For those teachers and other adults who are vaccinated, it will be optional to wear a mask. All adults who are not vaccinated will continue to wear a mask.”

None of the other changes to Edwards’ COVID-19 mitigation orders, such as the removal of capacity limitations on gatherings, will affect the summer program, Durrett said.

The roughly 840 students enrolled for the summer will still be split between Glen View Elementary School, Ruston Junior High School and the Lincoln Parish Early Childhood Center.

The first session will run June 7-18 as planned, followed by a four-week break and then a second session on July 12-23.

The program is largely remedial in nature, aimed at closing the learning gaps created by an irregular and COVID-tainted school year, plus the abrupt end to in-person learning in the closing months of the previous school year.

Durrett said the summer sessions will be a “good gauge of how the fall will look” in terms of getting back to normal.

“We’ll get an idea with these summer sessions, and if anything happens, we’ll make adjustments,” he said.