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KANSAS CITY, Kan. — It’s a week into the new school year, and a metro district already reversed its decision to encourage masks instead of mandating them.

The Turner School District in Kansas City, Kansas, confirmed its Board of Education voted Tuesday night to require everyone to wear masks while inside school buildings.

A district spokesperson said there are already COVID-19 cases inside school buildings this year, and the positive cases caused the change in the mask policy.

“Regardless of individual views on masking, we believe our families want their children to be in school, and this change will better our ability to keep classrooms and schools open,” the district said in a letter to parents.

Turner said it wants to keep as many students in school as possible while also avoid quarantining a substantial number of people. The board decided Tuesday night that the best way to do that would be to implement a mask mandate.

“We believe that in-person learning in our schools is what is best for our students. The need to quarantine unvaccinated, unmasked individuals is not sustainable for our staff and is taking too many students out of our classrooms. Because of this, we will be requiring masks in indoor spaces,” the district said in the letter.

The new policy begins Thursday.