Mercer Island Schools to End Mask Mandate

Mercer+Island+High+School+students+have+been+required+to+wear+masks+since+the+reopening+of+schools+in+the+Spring+of+2021.

Brooks Kahsai

Mercer Island High School students have been required to wear masks since the reopening of schools in the Spring of 2021.

Alex Levin, Editor in Chief

The Mercer Island School District will no longer require students and staff to wear masks during school hours starting Saturday, March 12.

This decision comes after Gov. Jay Inslee announced his March 12 removal of the statewide mask mandate. Inslee previously stated that he would conclude the mask mandate on March 21, but adjusted the date due to a decline in COVID-19 hospitalizations and case rates in Washington state.

King County will conclude its mask mandate concurrently with Inslee’s statewide announcement. 

“As we have done throughout the pandemic, we will continue to follow the guidance of state and local public health,” MISD Superintendent Donna Colosky wrote in an email to MISD parents.

“I ask that our community be respectful and sensitive to the individual decisions our staff and families will make on whether or not to wear a mask after March 12. No one in our schools should feel harassed or intimidated by their decision to wear or not to wear a face covering,” Colosky said.

In the coming weeks, the Department of Health will issue new safety procedures to accompany the conclusion of the mask mandate, such as contact tracing and testing. The district administration will share more details on updated protocols as they receive them.

“I continue to be impressed by our community’s perseverance as we have managed the pandemic in our District,” Colosky said. “The amazing job you have done by getting vaccinated and staying home when symptoms have been present have helped us get to the position of being able to remove masks.”