Marshall ISD waived its mask requirement Tuesday, no longer requiring students, staff and visitors to wear face coverings on district campuses and inside buildings.

The optional mask policy will continue during the 2021-22 school year, unless a change is necessary, according to district officials.

“We encourage everyone to make the best decision for themselves based on individual choice and individual needs, but as of Tuesday ... we will no longer be requiring a face covering in Marshall ISD,” Superintendent Richele Langley said in a statement Monday. “As of now, our plan will continue to be face masks optional going into next school year, but we will continue to monitor developments related to COVID-19 throughout the summer and be prepared to make any changes should they become necessary.”

Following Gov. Greg Abbot’s announcement lifting mask requirements across the state in March, Marshall ISD opted to keep continue requiring face coverings.

At the time, the district said the choice to continue the requirement was because of quarantine guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and recommended by the Texas Education Agency in regards to people who are in close contact with a positive case of COVID-19.

The district said it also believed it was necessary to allow ample time for staff members to receive a COVID-19 vaccine if they chose to, while also monitoring the district’s virus cases and quarantines.

As of Friday, the district reported six active cases of COVID-19 among Marshall ISD students and personnel, with an additional 20 in quarantine. The district’s largest campus, Marshall High School, had no COVID-19 cases or quarantine cases as of Friday.

Langley said the masks-optional policy would continue for the Marshall High School graduation, which is set for 7 p.m. on May 21 at Maverick Stadium. There will also be no limits on attendance at graduation, and both home and visitors sides will be open.

The last day of school is May 27.

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