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Masks are no longer required in Onondaga County schools

County Executive Ryan McMahon announced he is on board with the state’s decision to lift the mandate. Starting March2, students will no longer be required to wear mask in class and on school buses.

The move comes after surveillance testing showed less than one percent of 3,500 kids tested positive for the virus.

McMahon said removing the requirement now means the decision to wear a mask is a personal one.

"The state then has decided tomorrow that the masks can come off, and we agree with that. Certainly, if a parent and/or a faculty member in any of our school buildings want to wear masks, they should,” McMahon said. “But from a mandate standpoint, the emergency is not where it was.”

However, he said he’s not ruling out the possibility that it could return.

 “I think you don’t ever take any tool off the table knowing you don’t know what’s going to happen in the future,” McMahon added.

McMahon said schools will conduct contact tracing for positive cases, but exposed students who test negative can return to class.

Matt Wrigley comes from Mt. Laurel, New Jersey, and is pursuing his Broadcast and Digital Journalism degree at Newhouse. His goal is to be a beat writer for a Philadelphia sports team or a broadcaster for NBC/NBC Sports. This semester at WAER, he's looking forward to gaining confidence with interviews and improving his news writing.