(News Bulletin file)

(News Bulletin file)

Stricter mask rules coming into effect for Nanaimo-Ladysmith students

Grade 4-12 students now see mandatory mask requirements

With class resuming this week after two weeks of spring break, Nanaimo-Ladysmith school district is reminding parents and students that mask rules are becoming stricter.

In a letter to families, Charlene McKay, Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ board chairperson, and Scott Saywell, superintendent and CEO, said that effective Thursday, April 1, all students from Grade 4-12 will be required to wear masks in all indoor areas, including when they are at their desks and on buses, whether in or out of their learning cohort.

The district said there will be exceptions made for students who have health or behavioural reasons, are unable to put on or take off masks without the assistance of others. Students can also remove masks for certain activities such as playing a wind instrument or participating in a phys-ed class. Students who are eating or behind a barrier are also exempt.

Students from kindergarten to Grade 3 are not required to wear masks, though it is “strongly encouraged,” the letter notes.

The district also recommends families perform daily health checks and keep their children at home if they are feeling ill.

As of Tuesday, March 30, there were 389 active cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Island region.

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