These Bay Area School Districts Will Switch to ‘Highly Recommended’ Masks

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Earlier in the week, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced California would be lifting its mask mandate for K-12 schools across the state — effective March 12.

However, cities and counties are allowed to mandate masks for schools in their respective area, which will override the state mandate.

Schools in Marin County, Dublin Unified School District, Alameda County and Berkeley respectively announced on Thursday that they will align with the state’s policy of recommending masks instead of requiring them at from March 12.

Marin County

The shift to recommending masks instead of requiring them applies to the county’s K-12 public schools, as well as daycares.

Marin County cited “high vaccination rates” and “falling case rates” as reasons for making the switch.

As defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Marin County is categorized as “low” for COVID-19 transmission.

According to the CDC, areas in the “low” category are deemed safe for people to go without masks.

The full Marin County press release can be viewed here.

Alameda County

Like Marin County, Alameda County has announced it will align its school mask policy with California’s policy.

Students at K-12 schools across the county can go mask-free beginning March 12.

In the past, the city of Berkeley has established its own COVID-19 mandates — sometimes stricter than Alameda County’s mandates.

This time, Berkeley will align with the county and follow its masking guidelines in schools.

See a list of all school districts that fall under Alameda County.

Last week, Alameda County was placed in the “low” category for community transmission of COVID-19, as defined by the CDC.

However, this week starting March 3, the county was categorized as ‘medium’ – signifying a slight increase in COVID-19 transmission.

To see how the CDC defines transmission levels for COVID-19, click here.

Dublin Unified School District

In Alameda County, Dublin Unified School District Superintendent Chris D. Funk sent a separate statement saying it would align with county and state guidelines regarding masks in schools.

It will also be in effect on March 12.

“Effective this date, indoor masking at K-12 facilities will no longer be required (regardless of vaccination status) for students, staff, or visitors to any district facility. Although not mandatory, masking is still highly recommended,” Funk said in a statement.

The superintendent’s full letter to the community can be read here.

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