FREDERICK, Md. - Students are heading back to Frederick County Public Schools Wednesday for five days a week of in-person instruction amid a nationwide surge in coronavirus cases fueled by the highly contagious delta variant.
Officials say all students and staff will wear face coverings inside schools for the start of the 2021 school year.
Schools will not require masks to be worn outdoors although it is strongly recommended - particularly for those who are unvaccinated.
Masks will also be required on school buses for students and staff. School officials say vaccinations for students 12 and older are not mandatory at this time.
Any student or staff member who tests positive for COVID-19 will need to isolate at home according to CDC and Maryland Health Department guidelines. FCPS officials say contract tracing and quarantining strategies will be in use to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Schools will use a Metrics Dashboard to break down the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases by school community.
In addition to the many changes this year, FCPS officials confirm they are short about 25 bus drivers and have made changes to routes to ensure they can provide service for everyone.