JACKSONVILLE, Florida – The head of the region’s largest school district will address the pandemic and plans to welcome students and staff again at a press conference on Tuesday, scheduled for 10:30 a.m.

Duval County is exactly one week away from the first day of school.

Dr Diana Greene is expected to say more about the plan to reopen Duval County, which currently includes a requirement for school employees to wear masks for 30 days.

Masks are an option for students as the governor signed an executive order banning the form of districts requiring masks for students. Greene said if the governor had not made this decision, the students would have been included in Duval County’s 30-day mask rule.

On Monday evening, several parents and other community members participated in a virtual town hall with local pediatricians.

Doctors who spoke on the panel agreed, saying children returning to school must wear masks. At least one even suggested separating the classes.

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“Where families who do not want their children to wear a mask can choose to include their children in these classrooms and families who want to ensure that their children wear a mask will be placed in masked rooms,” he said. said Dr. Jeff Goldhagen with the Division of Community and Societal Pediatrics.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are also urging students, teachers and staff to wear masks inside schools.

The recommendations come as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to rise.

“Anyone 11 and under cannot be vaccinated. They are totally in danger. Those of us who are older and have had our shots almost have the luxury of being able to walk around and not be as scared as these little children, ”said Dr Bethany Atkins. “We’re not just talking about physical issues, potentially long term. But also the loss of school, the isolation, then how long will it take to resume their studies. “

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The panel suggested that teachers protect themselves more by continuing to wear masks, keeping their distance and making sure they are vaccinated.

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