Warren schools requiring face masks for all students and staff

Warren Consolidated Schools is the latest district in Metro Detroit to require all students and staff to wear face masks while indoors for all activities as COVID-19 spreads throughout the state and nation.

In a notice sent to families on Sunday, WCS announced that all students and staff, from Pre-K through 12th grade, must wear masks indoors starting on Monday, Aug. 23. The requirement includes all indoor athletic events, fine arts, and extracurricular activities - like practices, games, and rehearsals.

In the letter sent to families, the district cited the growing chorus of health experts calling for universal masking in schools, including the Michigan Chapter of the American Association of Pediatrics (miaap.org). 

RELATED: Michigan schools left to decide on masks

The mask requirement is in effect on Monday, Aug. 23, regardless of vaccination status. 

WCS said it will extend the deadline for registering for virtual learning if families decide this is a better option. 

READ NEXT: MDHHS recommends universal masking

As the start of the new school year is just a week away for most schools, each distrct is determining its own rules on whether to require masks for students and staff. 

On Aug. 13, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services recommended schools require masks but did not take the step to require them. 

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MDHHS is also recommending that schools promote vaccines and implement layered prevention measures.

"We are committed to ensuring Michigan students and educators are safe in the classroom, including those who may not yet be vaccinated," said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health at MDHHS. "MDHHS is issuing this guidance to help protect Michiganders of all ages. We continue to urge all eligible residents to get the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible as it is our best defense against the virus and the way we are going to end this pandemic."