Clayton County Public Schools is requiring all school staff, parents, guardians, caregivers, visitors, employees and contractors to wear masks on campus as of Monday, July 25.

For the moment, masking will remain optional for students, due to state law (SB 514, “Unmask Georgia Students Law”). Parents and guardians do have the right to send their children to school with masks as a health precaution.

General public and visitors (includes parents/legal guardians/caregivers)Required for all individuals to gain entry into CCPS building locations (offices, school sites, and facilities)
Employees/ContractorsRequired for all individuals working in CCPS facilities and/or on buses 
StudentsMask Optional for all students on buses, schools, and other CCPS facilities. 

CCPS said the increase in COVID-19 cases in the past few weeks prompted the move.

Superintendent Dr. Morcease Beasley said in a press release, “As positive COVID-19 cases continue to rise throughout the state and nation, we must take necessary steps to ensure employees and students are afforded a safe learning and work environment. This is a necessary step to protect all that enter our schools and facilities.”

As of Sunday, these were the vaccination rates among Clayton County’s school-age children:

Ages 0-4: 0.3% (infant and preschoolers)

Ages 5-9: 13.8% (Kindergarteners and elementary schoolers)

Ages 10-14: 35.6% (Middle schoolers)

Ages 15-19: 54.1% (High schoolers and college freshmen)

Vaccinations for children 0-4 only became available recently. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control recommends COVID-19 vaccinations for ages 5 and up, unless contraindicated by your doctor.

Jonesboro and Riverdale have had the most COVID-19 infections consistently since the outbreak began in 2020.

The Clayton County Health District is sponsoring a Back to School Vaccination Event, which includes hearing, vision, dental, and nutritional screenings. Get your back-to-school health check on these dates:

  • July 23 (9 a.m.-2 p.m. only)
  • July 25
  • July 26
  • July 27
  • July 28
  • July 29
  • August 1
  • August 2
  • August 3
  • August 4
  • August 5

You must call (678) 610-7199 to book an appointment.

Robin Kemp is executive editor and CEO of The Clayton Crescent, which she founded in 2020. She has worked for Gambit, CNN, The Weather Channel, Clayton News, Henry Herald, and numerous freelance outlets....

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