Face Covering Mandate Guidelines
On November 12th, Governor Mike Parson, the Department of Health and Senior Services
(DHSS), and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) announced
modifications to Missouri’s K-12 school reopening and operating guidance.
Under the updated guidance, proper mask wearing may now prevent individuals from being
identified as close contacts in K-12 schools that have implemented a mask mandate. This means that if both individuals at school – the person diagnosed with COVID-19 and the person exposed to the positive case – have masks on and are wearing them correctly, the individual exposed does not need to quarantine.
Exposed individuals should self-monitor for symptoms and stay home at the first sign of illness.
They should also continue to wear a mask at all times to further reduce the likelihood of
transmitting the virus. The person who tests positive for COVID-19 is still required to isolate at
Under this new guidance and to help keep students in school, the South Holt School District
will require face coverings to be worn at all times when they cannot social distance (6 foot) by staff and students K-12. Face coverings may be temporarily removed during recess, lunch, or when instructed by faculty or administration.
The South Holt Administration will abide by the following guidelines:
CDC exceptions to the face covering requirement:
- Face coverings should not be worn by anyone who has trouble breathing or is
- unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the face covering without
- Eating and drinking - Face coverings will not be required while eating or drinking.
- Individuals who have received approval from administration and/or school nurse after discussing their request not to wear appropriate face coverings/masks due to a physical, mental, or developmental health condition, if wearing an appropriate face covering/mask would lead to a medical emergency or would introduce significant safety concerns. A physician’s report is required to accompany such a request. In this exception, the administration may also discuss other possible accommodations for the student or staff member. Such discussion shall follow District policies and procedures under Section 504 and the ADA.
- Strenuous physical activities - A face covering will not be required for any person inside or outside of any school district facility while actively engaging in strenuous physical activity. During these times, social distancing will be maintained.
- Outdoor activities and recess – A face covering will not be required for students participating in outdoor activities as long as social distancing is maintained.
- Miscellaneous – When participating in activities such as music, choir, band, theater and athletics where the wearing of face coverings is not practical, students will not be required to wear face coverings during the activity, but must still follow any and all safety procedures in place for the particular activity. For such activities, alternate face covering options should be considered, as appropriate.
- Staff and School Personnel- Face coverings are not required when working alone in an enclosed, assigned work area.
Employees: All employees are expected to comply with the face covering requirements above
for the health and safety of themselves, their colleagues, their students and others. Employees
who do not comply will be reminded of the policy. If they refuse to comply after being
reminded, the employee may be disciplined according to School Board Policies, including but
not limited to insubordination.
All students are expected to follow face covering requirements while in school or
school-sponsored activities/events for the health and safety of themselves, their colleagues,
school staff, and others. Students who do not comply: 1) Will be reminded of the policy.
2) Parent(s)/guardian(s) will be notified of their non-compliance. 3) If a student refuses to
comply, they will be disciplined according to School Board Policies, including but not limited to
Members of the public and visitors will be politely reminded that face coverings are required while at or inside a district school/facility. A visitor will not be admitted to a district school/facility without a face covering.
At the time of this writing further guidance is needed from the state and local health
departments concerning mask mandates for patrons attending school functions and
activities. Additional guidelines will be provided at a later date.