Waterloo Catholic District School Board makes masks mandatory for all students

By Kitchener Today, Cam Dorrett

No matter the age, every single student will be required to wear a mask when they enter a public or catholic school in Waterloo this school year.

WCDSB Chair Bill Conway tells 570 NEWS there is still a lot we don’t know about the virus, and board members wanted to err on the side of caution.

“It’s for protection of them (the students) and also protection of our staff, and it also it raises more consistancy that all students would be wearing masks in school and if they were riding the school bus.”

“We received feedback from parents in the community and they thought it was perhaps necessary we extend that mask policy to our K-Grade 3 group of students.”

It follows a similar move made by the Waterloo Region District School Board earlier this month.

As part of the province’s re-opening plan, all students in Grade 4-12 were part of the mandate, while encouraging students in the younger grades to also don a mask, stopping short of making it mandatory.

Conway notes the board already planned on providing masks for the younger students should their parents want them to have one, or they simply forgot to bring one to school.

“They had accounted for providing three masks for all students, certainly any child even if they were in Grades K-3, whether they wanted one or their parent wanted them to have one, would be provided with one.”

He adds the Catholic board will still be reaching out to the province for financial assistance when it comes to PPE, something that many boards across Ontario are struggling to pay for.

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