GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KREX) — District 51 Assistant Superintendent Dr. Brian Hill confirmed exclusively to KREX 5’s Jocelyn Stafford that due to a high COVID positivity rate at nine district schools a temporary mask mandate will be in effect. Students of schools with a positivity rate of over 2% will be required to wear a mask for the next two weeks.

According to the District 51 data dashboard, the schools with a positivity rate over 2% are Central High School, Chipeta Elementary, Fruita Middle School, Fruitvale Elementary, New Emerson School at Columbus, Redlands Middle School, Shelledy Elementary School, Tope Elementary School, and Wingate Elementary School.

Dos Rios Elementary (1.6%), Fruita 8/9 (1.5%), Fruita Monument High School (1.9%), Grand Junction High School (1.5%), Lincoln Orchard Mesa Elementary (1.6%), Orchard Mesa Middle School (1.7%), Palisade High School (1.6%), and Pear Park Elementary (1.5%) are at risk of joining the list.

The total positivity rate for the district currently sits at 1.4%, or 300 of 20,860 students. As of January 13, 63 District 51 staff members were confirmed positive for COVID-19.

If case numbers continue to rise, officials say some schools may return to remote learning.

This is a developing story. KREX 5 will continue to update you as the situation unfolds.

Tune in to KREX 5 News at 5 p.m. for the full story.