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News about coronavirus in Florida and around the world is constantly emerging. It's hard to stay on top of it all but Health News Florida and WUSF can help. Our responsibility at WUSF News is to keep you informed, and to help discern what’s important for your family as you make what could be life-saving decisions.

Masks In Florida Schools Should Be Voluntary Next Year, Richard Corcoran Says

Richard Corcoran at podium
News Service of Florida
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This goes against recommendations by the CDC.

Florida’s education commissioner wants superintendents across the state to make face coverings voluntary for students, teachers and staff in upcoming school year.

Richard Corcoran's memo Wednesday says masks “serve no remaining good at this point in our schools.”

It said masks are a personal decision, and "data shows us that districts' face covering policies do not impact the spread of the virus."

That goes against the consensus of public health experts and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which say mask-wearing in schools and elsewhere is key to preventing the spread.

Statewide, only 20% of Florida's population is fully vaccinated.

WUSF has asked the Department of Education for more information on the research Corcoran cited, but has not received any further details.

Teachers union officials say the only way to safely and successfully reopen schools is by following CDC guidelines, and that includes masks.

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