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Indianapolis Public Schools to end masking, social distancing requirements on Monday

Posted at 8:30 PM, Feb 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-25 13:06:54-05

INDIANAPOLIS — Starting Monday, a new set of COVID-19 protocols will go into effect for Indianapolis Public Schools.

The new guidance states that masks will be optional on IPS property, social distancing will no longer be required and IPS will no longer require contact tracing or quarantine for those who've had close contact with someone with COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, according to a Thursday statement from the district.

Although masks will be optional at schools, they'll still be required on buses in accordance with a federal mandate.

All the protocols are subject to change based on new guidance from the Indiana State Health Department, the Marion County Public Health Department, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the district said.

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The announcement comes after the Indiana Department of Health eased its COVID-19 guidance for Indiana schools.

The new guidance, which went into effect Wednesday, states schools are no longer required to contact trace or report positive cases to IDOH. In addition, schools no longer need to quarantine students exposed to someone with COVID-19, regardless of whether the school requires masks.

People who test positive for COVID-19 can return to school after five days of isolation if they have been fever-free for 24 hours without the use of medication and symptoms are improving.

IDOH said schools should continue to assist and notify local health departments if an outbreak or cluster of cases occurs. Schools will also be encouraged to share information with families when a case is identified so parents can monitor their children for symptoms.

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IPS said it still encourages people to use masks indoors and that daily COVID screenings will still be required for students and employees.

Those who develop COVID-19-like symptoms will still need to stay at home and will not be able to attend school or participate in school activities.

Quarantine requirements vary depending on a student's age.

A full list of IPS' new COVID-19 protocols is available online.