Schools: Masks lead to fewer outbreaks

Health officials say most COVID-19 outbreaks in Kansas schools occur in districts without mask mandates.

By

State News

October 8, 2021 - 2:42 PM

Photo by Celia Llopis Jepsen / Kansas News Service / kcur.org

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Health officials are frustrated that many school boards remain reluctant to adopt mask mandates, even though most COVID-19 outbreaks in Kansas schools are occurring in districts without such requirements.

The state has 68 active school clusters, down from 79 a week ago, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment announced Wednesday. And those clusters have been connected to 596 cases, one hospitalization and one death. 

Of the active outbreaks from last week, only 29% occurred in districts that reported having a mask requirement, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported.  The outbreaks at schools without mask mandates or that did not report what their mask policies were had clusters with about five to six times as many cases per capita, according to health department data.

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