TUHS students will start school year with masks

By Doug Keeler Midway Driller Editor
dkeeler@taftmidwaydriller.com @midwaydriller
Taft Union High School District board met in board room Monday night for first time since pandemic began.

Taft Union High School students will be wearing masks indoors when school starts on Aug. 18

The TUHSD Board of Trustees reluctantly agreed to the requirements after new Supt. Dr. Jason Hodgson presented the findings from the California Department of Public Health.

It's big step in the right direction, but TUHS is looking forward to getting back to a pre-pandemic normal.

"We are really, really hopeful to find that normal," Hodgson said. "Our goals... is to get back to normal, to get out of masks as early as possible."

Dr. Jason Hodgson discusses California Department of Public Health guidelines with board.

The CDPH said mask requirements will be reevaluated by Nov. 1

The CDPH said "in-person instruction can occur safely without a minimum when other mitigation strategies are utilized."

That means masks at all times indoors and on buses.

The only exception will be eating in the cafeteria while eating and drinking but social distancing will be important there

P.E. classes outdoors will not need masks but indoors classes will.

Still to come is guidance for bands, sports, choir and other extra-curricular activities

The mask requirement will be implemented, but the board isn't very enthusiastic.

"We have not done this. The government has done this to our kids," board member Julie Ortlieb said.

Still she's happy that in-person instruction and sports are coming back.

Board President Paul Linder said everyone, regardless of their view on masking, needs to get along.

"I would just ask everybody to respect each other," he said.

"Our goal is to keep this school open," board member John Kopp added, saying the board is committed to that.