GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.

Just as COVID-19 numbers are soaring to record levels nationwide and multiple Colorado areas have mask mandates in place, District 51’s newly elected school board members’ first move will be to end potential mask mandates by February 7th.

Current policy requires a classroom to wear masks for 14 days if there is a positive case in an elementary school class or if any school K-12 reaches a 2% positivity rate.

New board members prioritized removing the mask protocol despite the fact the protocol was rarely used during the current school year and no general mask requirement was ever in place.

Multiple parents accused new board members of a lack of transparency after learning the board tried to approve hiring a Colorado Springs attorney without ever consulting with two standing board members or investigating the costs. That was during the board’s recent contentious public meeting. Board members since agreed to allow local law firms to compete for a contract.

D51 board member, Andrea Haitz released a statement saying, “Now that the vaccine is readily available in Mesa County for those ages five and older, we can emulate what Mesa County did in their free to choose.”

Haitz, says the D51 board members will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and make sure case numbers are declining as they move forward.