The New York City Education Department revealed on Friday that the Big Apple will no longer require public school students and staff to wear masks outdoors while on school property.
Sources said the outdoor school mask mandate will end Monday, Feb. 28.
Despite the order, it was learned that staff and visitors are still required to wear masks indoors in the city’s public schools.
“I am so pleased that we are able to make this exciting announcement and safely allow students and staff to remove their masks when outdoors at NYC public schools,” Schools Chancellor David Banks said.
With COVID-19 cases dwindling in New York City, Big Apple mayor Eric Adams on Wednesday said he is seriously thinking of rolling back the city’s coronavirus vaccine and mask mandates for indoor settings.
Adams told reporters that he had no timetable for the phasing out of mask mandates but reveals that it is one of his top priorities.
“I can’t wait to get it done,” Adams said.
Adams also hinted that he also wants to relax or even outright scrap the city’s rules on mask-wearing.
“I look forward in the next few weeks to going through a real transformation that I don’t have to wonder what you look like. I will know what you look like again,” Adams added.
Based on the current NYC mask mandates, masks must be worn in schools, health care settings, many entertainment venues, and while on public transit.
The city also recommends that masks be worn in congested public indoor spaces, like grocery stores.
Aside from the mask mandate, COVID vaccinations are also mandated for most public indoor activities, like drinking and eating at restaurants and bars.
Sources said some top cities in the US such as Boston and Philadelphia already stopped their indoor vaccine mandates, citing a sharp decline in new infections.