Kansas City leaders planning school mask mandate, ending public order

Tracking Coronavirus

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City took a preliminary step to create a new school mask mandate Wednesday morning.

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas introduced an ordinance during a committee meeting to require masks for everyone in private and public school settings where K-12 students attend. The mask requirement would mandate children and even adults wear masks while on school buses and in schools through Dec. 2.

The Kansas City Health Department presented information showing the number of new cases and hospitalizations in juveniles 18 and under are declining, but the agency said there are still dozens of children hospitalized because of COVID-19.

The mayor said he also met with superintendents from Kansas City school districts. He told a council committee Wednesday the superintendents supported extending the mandate for school-aged children to help keep kids safe and reduce quarantine times.

Council members Melissa Robinson and Eric Bunch both expressed concerns about ending the mask mandate for adults with the upcoming holidays. Bunch also pointed out that the last time the city did away with its mask mandate, almost everyone quit wearing masks.

After expressing concerns — and support — for the ordinance, committee members unanimously voted to send it to the full council. The council will vote on the ordinance Thursday.

Kansas City has been under a mask mandate since August. The current indoor mask mandate is set to expire on Nov. 4.

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