On the day Iredell-Statesville Schools began requiring masks for students and staff, five schools are returning to remote learning due to recent COVID cases.
Iredell-Statesville Schools spokeswoman Boen Nutting announced Thursday afternoon that East Iredell, West Iredell and Lakeshore middle schools as well as Central Elementary School and North Iredell High School are now operating on a remote/virtual schedule. That will continue until Sept. 10.
Nutting said this is a result of active COVID cases as well as close contact quarantines.
"Our number one priority is to continue with face-to-face learning," Nutting said. "Sending students home will hopefully mitigate the spread of COVID and allow us to come back healthy on Sept. 13, 2021."
Iredell-Statesville Schools operated on an "optional mask" policy until Tuesday, when the Board Of Education mandated masks beginning Thursday.
"We are hopeful that the mandated mask policy will allow us to get back into the classrooms and reduce the spread of COVID as well as the number of close contacts. When individuals aren't masked or vaccinated, the quarantine rules inhibit our ability to keep kids in classrooms," Nutting said. "While our community is utterly divided on the topic of masks, I believe that most of us agree that students need to be in the classroom. That's our primary goal."