ALBANY, N.Y. (WWTI) — New York State United Teachers is calling on counties to mandate mask wearing in public school statewide as schools are set to reopen next week.

NYSUT stated on September 4 that county governments should mandate a policy for school districts to require all to wear masks indoors during the school day.

Following the call for statewide action, NYSUT President Andy Pallotta praised Orange County for taking the step for mask mandates.

“While some school districts are doing the right thing and requiring masks at all times, we still are seeing others who refuse to take this basic step to protect the health of students, staff and families,” stated Pallotta. “Orange County is taking a lead role in helping address the reservations that exist regarding reopening school buildings. We believe other county leaders should follow suit and address the concerns we’re still hearing from educators and parents.”

During the last week of August, NYSUT sent a letter to state Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker asking for a statewide regulation requiring masks to be worn at all times indoors during the school day. Recent guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics was cited in the letter.

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