SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- Western Mass News is tracking the back-to-school mask policies of local districts as they make their individual decisions before the start of class.
With the announcement from Holyoke, two of the largest school districts have made the decision to mask up.
They join Springfield in requiring masks for their students. Easthampton is finalizing a masking plan Tuesday night that was sent out by the superintendent, and Longmeadow has a discussion planned for Tuesday night too.
Chicopee is expected to discuss the issue Wednesday at a meeting and make their announcement this week.
A discussion is planned in East Longmeadow on Thursday and in Westfield on Monday.
There are some differences in what the schools are considering as a policy. Some schools are considering only requiring masks for students under 12 who are too young to get the shot and for those older students who are unvaccinated.
That is what the governor has strongly recommended to districts.
But some are getting the community’s input on the decision.
Westfield Public Schools Superintendent Stefan Czaporowski said he sent out a survey to ascertain parents’ opinions on their own child’s safety.
This all comes as the chairs of the state legislature’s public health committee, including Senator Jo Comerford of Amherst, are calling on the governor to mandate masks for kids in schools.
The chairs of this committee say the governor needs to go beyond strongly recommending masks for kids too young to get vaccinated and mandate it instead.
Also, they say the mask honor system among older kids who are not vaccinated will not protect students adequately and seemed to suggest that all students regardless of vaccination status should wear a face covering.