WHITE PLAINS – The state will now allow county and city governments to impose a mask mandate on students in those counties as a means of protecting themselves against the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Cuomo announced on Wednesday.
He agreed to that after Westchester County Executive George Latimer requested permission for him to mandate masks in county school districts.
“It will be up to the county government, it will be up to a city government if they want to impose a mask mandate on students in their schools,” said the governor.
“Throughout the pandemic, we have experienced first-hand just how much mask wearing, when coupled with social distancing, can help curtain the spread of COVID-19,” Latimer said. The county consulted with school superintendents in the county and received solid support for the proposal.
“All public, private, parochial and charter school students, along with their educators and staff, will now be required to wear a mask at all times, with the exception of during designated breaks, when eating, during heavy physical exertion, or when a teacher allows them to be taken off,” Latimer said.
He said while Westchester has not reached the peak numbers if neighboring counties, “our numbers in Westchester are still on the rise, and this mandate is essential to keeping the people of our county safe.”