Alachua school board votes to extend mask mandate for eight weeks

Coronavirus

Decision comes following Florida Board of Education to punish Alachua, Broward counties for mask mandates

School classroom with blackboard

TAMPA (WFLA) – The Alachua County School Board has announced voted unanimously to extend the district’s mask mandate for eight weeks.

The news comes hours after Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran and the Florida Board of Education voted unanimously to punish Broward and Alachua counties for mandating masks in schools.

Although the exact punishment has yet to be determined, the votes marked the first punishments for districts that chose to mandate masks amid a surge in cases of COVID-19 from the delta variant of the coronavirus as the school year gets underway.

School districts in the Tampa Bay area including Hillsborough and Sarasota are planning to hold emergency board meetings this week to discuss rising COVID-19 cases in schools.

Gov. DeSantis has yet to make comment on the decision by the Alachua County School Board.

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