Good evening Hart District families,
I’m writing to share the good news that we are scheduled to fully reintroduce in-person learning on August 10. We also look forward to the full restoration of student athletics and activities. All Hart District schools are hard at work preparing to welcome students back to campus. Classes will be conducted without a requirement for social distancing. We are eager to get things started soon!
Indoor Masking Requirement
State and County officials recently ruled that masks will be required for all individuals while inside buildings on campuses. Masks are recommended but not required while outside.
We recognize that the issue of masking is a topic of great concern for many families in our community. Given the strong interest in this subject, it’s important to understand who makes the rules when it comes to masking requirements.
Who Makes the Masking Rules?
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is a national advisory group that provides guidance on issues of public health. The CDC does not issue public health mandates. Rather, they issue recommendations that are used by California regulatory agencies to craft the rules for local school districts. CDC recommendations on masking can be found HERE and are summarized by the following quote:
"Masks should be worn indoors by all individuals (age 2 and older) who are not fully vaccinated. Consistent and correct mask use by people who are not fully vaccinated is especially important indoors and in crowded settings, when physical distancing cannot be maintained."
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is a regulatory agency that has taken a stance that is more restrictive than the recommendations of the CDC. CDPH calls for universal masking indoors on school campuses. Unlike the CDC’s recommendation, this is a requirement for California public schools. CDPH requirements on masking can be found HERE and are summarized by the following quotes:
"Masks are optional outdoors for all in K-12 school settings."
"K-12 students are required to mask indoors."
"Adults in K-12 school settings are required to mask when sharing indoor spaces with students."
While the LA County Department of Public Health (LACDPH) must comply with CDPH mandates it can also enact more restrictive requirements if necessary. Currently LA County requirements align with state mandates. LACDPH requirements on masking can be found HERE and are summarized by the following quote:
"Anyone entering school buildings or transports (school buses as well as school buildings) who has contact with others (students, parents, or other employees) is required to wear a face mask."
Local school boards and district staff do not have the authority to defy the orders of our State and County regulatory agencies. We recognize that there are some who are strongly opposed to the continuance of this requirement. We respect the fact that there are people on all sides of this issue. Nevertheless, we must adhere to the current masking requirements as established by State and County regulatory agencies.
Independent Study Alternative
If your family desires an alternative independent study option, the Hart District offers access to our award-winning Learning Post Academy (LPA).
You can learn more about LPA through a video introduction located HERE.
You can register HERE for an informational meeting on LPA scheduled for July 29th at 9:30 am.
You can fill out an application to enroll at LPA by going HERE.
As we embrace these measures to keep our community safe, we acknowledge that these mandated restrictions will cause frustrations and inconvenience for some. While I regret this fact, I’m encouraged to reflect on the advice of the great John Wooden who wrote:
"Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out."
We hope you will join us in this opportunity to make the best of this new start.
William S. Hart Union High School District