That bittersweet feeling of a summer’s end is near as thousands of students in San Diego County are trading the scent of sunscreen for Lysol and hand sanitizer as they return to school Tuesday.
Students from the Grossmont and Escondido Union High School Districts are hitting the books – or tablets – as many step foot on campus again for the first time in a year. Their return comes as COVID-19 cases continue to increase across the county and nationwide.
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As a precaution, classrooms won’t be looking the same as they previously did. Although social distancing will no longer be enforced in schools, masks will still be required for all indoor settings, regardless of a person’s vaccine status.
Escondido and Grossmont Union High School Districts communicated the changes to parents and gave families the option to have their children return to class or enroll in an off-campus online study program.
The district said they’re prepared for any possible outbreaks and have created a protocol in case such a thing occurs: students or staff who test positive for COVID-19, as well as anyone in the school they’ve been in contact with, will be quarantined. Strict cleaning protocols are also in place at the districts’ schools.
While some agree that physically returning to school and having students reunited with their peers is beneficial to their health, the country is still divided on whether masks should be required for minors.
Still, health experts repeat that evidence shows the best way to protect yourself during the pandemic is to get vaccinated and wear a mask.