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Update - Face Covering Expectation Effective Monday, September 28, 2020
Steven M. Bloom
Thursday, September 24, 2020

UPDATE TO THE GAC REOPENING PLAN - EXPECTATIONS FOR THE WEARING OF FACE COVERINGS AT SCHOOL BY STUDENTS AND STAFF MEMBERS - Effective Monday, September 28, 2020

On Tuesday, September 22, 2020 Governor Tony Evers declared a public health emergency in Wisconsin under Executive Order #90 and issued Emergency Order #1 relating to requiring face coverings.  Emergency Order #1 is in effect through November 21 and continues requirements contained in the prior order on face coverings.  The order, in part, is copied below for your reference.

As a local governmental agency the Goodman-Armstrong Creek school board, acting under their statutory authority, have decided to increase expectations for the wearing of face coverings at school.  After consideration of this recently extended order and reviewing the existing GAC Reopening Plan, and desiring to maintain a safe and healthy learning environment for all students and all staff members, and to attempt to have our schools remain open as long as possible, the school board has determined that effective Monday, September 28, 2020 and lasting for a one month period (to be reviewed by the board at the October 28, 2020 school board meeting) the following requirements will be implemented:

  1. All 4K through Grade 12 students will wear a face covering while indoors for the entirety of the scheduled school day.  Exceptions will be made for teacher directed “mask breaks” and when students are eating or drinking.  Please note the definition of a face covering and other exceptions as noted below.

  2. All district employees will wear a face covering while indoors for the entirety of the scheduled school day.  Exceptions will be made when a staff member is in their assigned work area and are alone with no other staff members or students present.  Please note the definition of a face covering and other exceptions as noted below.

  3. All student bus riders will wear a face covering while riding on the bus to and from school each day.

  4. Requirements for the wearing of face coverings during co-curricular events and activities and athletic practices and scheduled competitions will be managed according to Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association and Northern Lakes Conference guidelines. 

Executive Order #1 

“NOW, THEREFORE, I, TONY EVERS, Governor of the State of Wisconsin, by the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of this state, and specifically Section 323.12 of the Wisconsin Statutes, hereby order the following: 

1. DEFINITIONS. 

a. “Enclosed space” means a confined space open to the public where individuals congregate, including but not limited to outdoor bars, outdoor restaurants, taxis, public transit, ride-share vehicles, and outdoor park structures. 

b. “Face covering” means a piece of cloth or other material that is worn to cover the nose and mouth completely. A “face covering” includes but is not limited to a bandana, a cloth face mask, a disposable or paper mask, a neck gaiter, or a religious face covering. A “face covering” does not include face shields, mesh masks, masks with holes or openings, or masks with vents. 

c. “Physical distancing” means maintaining at least six feet of distance from other individuals who are not members of your household or living unit. 

2. FACE COVERING REQUIRED. Every individual, age five and older, in Wisconsin shall wear a face covering if both of the following apply: 

a. The individual is indoors or in an enclosed space, other than at a private residence; and; 

b. Another person or persons who are not members of individual’s household or living unit are present in the same room or enclosed space. 

Face coverings are strongly recommended in all other settings, including outdoors when it is not possible to maintain physical distancing. 

3. EXCEPTIONS. a. Individuals who are otherwise required to wear a face covering may remove the face covering in the following situations: 

i. While eating or drinking.

ii. When communicating with an individual who is deaf or hard of hearing and communication cannot be achieved through other means. 

iii. While obtaining a service that requires the temporary removal of the face covering, such as dental services. 

iv. While sleeping. 

v. While swimming or on duty as a lifeguard. 

vi. While a single individual is giving a religious, political, media, educational, artistic, cultural, musical, or theatrical presentation for an audience, the single speaker may remove the face covering when actively speaking. While the face covering is removed, the speaker must remain at least 6 feet away from all other individuals at all times. 

vii. When engaging in work where wearing a face covering would create a risk to the individual, as determined by government safety guidelines. 

viii. When necessary to confirm the individual’s identity, including when entering a bank, credit union, or other financial institution.

ix. When federal or state law or regulations prohibit wearing a face covering. 

b. In accordance with CDC guidance, the following individuals are exempt from the face covering requirement in Section 2: 

i. Children between the ages of 2 and 5 are encouraged to wear a mask when physical distancing is not possible. The CDC does not recommend masks for children under the age of 2. 

ii. Individuals who have trouble breathing. 

iii. Individuals who are unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the face covering without assistance. 

iv. Individuals with medical conditions, intellectual or developmental disabilities, mental health conditions, or other sensory sensitivities that prevent the individual from wearing a face covering. 

v. Incarcerated individuals. The Wisconsin Department of Corrections shall continue to comply with COVID-19 protocols to ensure the health and safety of its staff and individuals in its care. 

Local governments are strongly encouraged to continue or create COVID-19 protocols to ensure the health and safety of their staff and individuals in their care.” 

We are very appreciative of your support of this heightened safety protocol to maintain a safe and healthy learning environment for our students and staff members.  Questions or concerns may be directed to Dr. Steven M. Bloom, District Administrator/Principal, at 715-336-2575, ext. 203 or sbloom@goodman.k12.wi.us.