COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- In a letter to staff and families on Monday, Cheyenne Mountain School District 12 Superintendent David Peak announced that the district is reversing course, and reinstating a mask requirement for all students, staff, and visitors while indoors in any District 12 school or facility.
The requirements start Wednesday, January, 5, and last through Friday, January 28.
Peak says the mask requirements are consistent with El Paso County Public Health's recommended COVID-19 prevention strategies and that D12's Board of Education is in support of the requirements in order to maximize in-person learning for students and staff.
"Per El Paso County Public Health (EPCPH), positive individuals are still required to isolate which impedes our capacity to maintain in-person learning for students and staff," Peak said in the letter directed at D12 parents and staff. "The reality of the anticipated staff shortages and our continued goal of keeping our students in-person must be considered."
Peak points to the recent COVID-19 surge within El Paso County, including rising incidence rate and positivity rate. As of Tuesday, the 7-day incidence rate in El Paso County sits at 831 positive COVID cases per 100,000 residents - breaking the previous record set on Monday.
“Recently, the El Paso County Public Health Department revised its guidance for local school districts effective December 18, 2021. Officials will no longer require mandatory, automatic quarantines for COVID-19 in local schools,” said Peak in the December 9 letter. “As you know, the reason for our indoor mask mandate was to keep students out of quarantine and in school. Given the removal of mandatory, automatic quarantines by public health effective December 18, 2021, Cheyenne Mountain School District 12 will no longer require a mask or facial covering while indoors for students, staff, and visitors beginning December 18, 2021.”
13 Investigates reached out to Superintendent Peak for comment, but he was unavailable.