District 117 Removing Mask Requirement on School Buses

By Benjamin Cox on February 25, 2022 at 11:56am

Jacksonville School District 117 is changing policies on masking on its school buses.

In an email update from Superintendent Steve Ptacek this morning, Ptacek says he has received guidance from the district’s legal counsel that masks on the district’s buses should be optional. Ptacek says the reasoning behind the change is that district receives its school bus funding from the Illinois State Board of Education and not from the federal government.

Currently, the federal government requires masks on public transportation.

Ptacek says that Covid numbers remain low. Ptacek says yesterday the district had 3 total positive cases – one teacher and two students. Ptacek says after just a few weeks with the mask optional policy in the district, the district is seeing some of its lowest numbers since the pandemic began.

Ptacek says if the numbers remain low, he will consider removing social distancing protocols like assigned seating and distancing at lunch after Spring Break.