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Board Approves Masking Policy

Media Release

PHONE: (205) 759-3549
FAX: (205) 759-3542

August 10, 2021

Board Approves Masking Policy Until 9/10

The Tuscaloosa City Board of Education approved a policy tonight that governs how the school system will handle COVID-19 infections in the student population and among staff members. The following items outline the district’s position on the issue:

  • TCS will follow the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Order on masking on public conveyances (i.e. school buses). This means that passengers and drivers must wear masks on school buses, regardless of the local policy on masks.
  • TCS will adopt universal masking as recommended by the Alabama Department of Health as a strategy to combat the spread of COVID-19 during the school day. This practice will be in effect August 12 - September 10, 2021 (exceptions include outdoors, Physical Education classes, recess, and documented cases of students with special needs). After September 10, 2021, the TCS will “highly recommend” masks for all. The masking requirement will be reviewed before September 10. 
  • Students and staff exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 will be sent home from school/work and provided guidance from the Alabama Department of Public Health. 
    • Individuals who test positive for or are diagnosed with COVID-19 must stay home for their isolation period following the onset of symptoms or the positive test result, be 24 hours without fever or fever-reducing medications, and experience symptom improvement before returning from isolation. 
  • TCS will notify individuals who are considered “close contact" as defined in ADPH’s Back to School Guidance document. It should be noted that under the updated guidance from ADPH, the agency retains the sole responsibility of quarantining individuals from school/work.
  • Employees who test positive or are required to quarantine shall use their leave time. However, TCS will make “COVID leave” available to employees who meet the following conditions until September 30, 2021:
    • test positive or are required to quarantine by ADPH
    • provide proof of vaccination status 

The Tuscaloosa City Schools are committed to providing a safe learning and work environment. Schools will continue to use social distancing and enhanced cleaning practices, promote handwashing, offer hand sanitizer, and encourage the use of water bottle filling stations. Additionally, TCS will provide breakfast and lunch at no cost throughout the 2021-2022 school year.

Parents and caregivers can support the effort to maintain safe and healthy learning environments by monitoring their student’s health for symptoms and keeping students home while symptoms are present. 

We look forward to serving students five days a week starting August 12.


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