Government Schools

With COVID Metrics Improving, Lamont Hints At Possibly Ending School Mask Mandate

Gov. Ned Lamont dons a mask before walking into Charter Oak International Academy following a press conference on July 22. Photo credit: Ronni Newton (we-ha.com file photo)

As of Thursday, there were 22 cases of COVID-19 in West Hartford Public Schools, down from 409 in the first week of January, and overall reported cases in town have dropped dramatically as well, from more than 900 in a week in early January to about 125 over the past week.

West Hartford Public Schools COVID Dashboard, Feb. 3, 2022

By Ronni Newton

A mandate for mask-wearing in classrooms is included among the the 11 executive orders that Gov. Ned Lamont has been planning to ask the legislature to extend once the session begins next week, and before his emergency authority expires on Feb. 15, but this week the governor has suggested that he might rescind that requirement.

“I think that’s a real possibility,” Lamont said Tuesday regarding a possible shift from a  statewide mandate to a policy allowing local jurisdictions set their own school masking rules.

The governor pointed to the state’s COVID metrics, which have been generally declining after a sharp spike in January. The state reported 869 hospitalizations on Thursday, which is 401 fewer patients than there were a week ago – a 31.6% drop. The number of daily cases has been declining as well, and while the positivity rate is an imperfect indicator due to the number of home tests that are not being recorded, the rate has been dropping dramatically, with a rate of 6.57% reported Thursday.

West Hartford’s average daily case rate per 100,000 of population was reported at 52.2 on Thursday, and while the town – along with all but two Connecticut towns – remains on red alert status, that rate is just about half of what it was a week ago. This week’s rate measures the 14-day period from Jan. 16-29. Three weeks ago, West Hartford’s rate was 180.

Click here to read more at CTNewsJunkie.com.


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