mask

Schools in the city of Thomasville will require face coverings for at least another month.

THOMASVILLE — Schools in the city of Thomasville will require face coverings throughout the district for at least another month after Thomasville City Schools Board of Education approved the extension earlier this week.

The decision comes a week after Davidson County Schools also stuck with masks and Randolph County Schools made them optional effective Monday. School officials in each of the local districts provided residents with varying degrees of reason to believe that the requirement could soon be lifted.

“As rates of transmission fall, we can begin to look at less restrictive masking policies — the suggestion from the CDC is when they get to the moderate level, or the yellow level,” TCS Superintendent Cate Gentry said. “The majority of the state is red, which is high, or orange, which is substantial. Davidson County is red.”

Gentry said the decision to request continuation of the schools’ current masking policy comes as a result of transmission rates not decreasing at a rate satisfactory for lesser restrictions. The superintendent asked for “continue[d] masking through Dec. 10 because we have not reached that moderate level of transmission.”

Davidson County Health Department’s latest report indicated 256 cases were diagnosed in the last 10 days. The county’s death toll has now reached 317 since April 2020. A total of 47% of county residents are partially vaccinated, while 44% of Davidson County is fully vaccinated.

In the county schools, 32 students and nine staff were confirmed positive with COVID-19 in the week from Oct. 29 to Nov. 5. Six staff members and 24 students were quarantined.

East Davidson reported one of the county’s 32 cases of COVID-19. Ledford High and Ledford Middle both had two.

The number of students and staff in the Davidson County Schools district required to quarantine has been dropping since its highest point in mid-August when 1,447 students in one week were required to quarantine after being exposed to the virus at school.

Staff writer Daniel Kennedy can be reached at 336-888-3578, or at kennedy@tvilletimes.com.

Staff writer Daniel Kennedy can be reached at 336-888-3578, or at kennedy@tvilletimes.com.