Confusion in schools over masks: where should they continue to be used?

The first day of non-compulsory use of a mask in most interior spaces in Spain is fulfilled, but some doubts still persist. Educational centers are one of the places that have attracted the most attention this Wednesday, and apparently there has been some uncertainty and caution.

Antonio González Picornell, president of the Federation of Associations of Directors of Public Institutes (Fedadi), explained to EFE that some centers were awaiting instructions this Wednesday from their respective Departments of Education or regional regulations, after the publication in the BOE of the end of the indoor face coverings (with some exceptions).

In schools and institutes there have been all kinds of situations and a new way of wearing the mask has been inaugurated: the “beard” type, that is, not removing it completely but only covering part of the lips and chin, several explain to EFE. teachers from Madrid.

For now, 50-30-20, but “little by little we will relax”

Yolanda, a teacher and counselor at a school with more than a thousand students in the south of the Madrid region, calculates that almost 50% of the students have taken it off, 30% have preferred to leave it on, and the rest have opted for beard style. In the case of teachers, there has been a majority that has not been removed in class. “Little by little we will relax,” predicts the teacher.

In Catalonia, which was ahead of the rest of Spain yesterday in removing the mask in schools, many Primary and Secondary students also chose to continue wearing it in class, out of habit, precaution or inertia.

“Given the uncertainty, we detected that both students and teachers have continued to use the mask; there has not been a massive abandonment”

“In general, given the uncertainty, we detected that both students and teachers have continued to use the mask; there has not been a massive abandonment, ”says the general secretary of the CCOO Teaching Federation, Francisco García, who predicts that non-use will be normalized in the coming days.

The Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, has been emphasizing for days that as of this Wednesday, masks will not be used in school settings “in no case”, as the experts of the Alerts Conference had indicated, as agreed by the majority of communities and as introduced by the new decree published in the BOE.

“Regarding school environments, to mean that it will not be used in any case. The masks will no longer be mandatory, they were no longer in recess and, now, in all areas of educational centers, ”Darias stressed this Tuesday.

And in private schools?

However, there are gaps that leave room for doubt and interpretation. For example, the new norm leaves the door open for private companies to decide on the use of masks based on the risk due to the circumstances of the environment, with those responsible for occupational risks being in charge of evaluating the need for use. Thus, as Cadena Ser points outprivate schools, as companies that they are, could also force teachers and/or students not to remove it yet.

Sources from the Association of Private and Independent Schools (CICAE) affirm that the removal of the masks has been carried out this Wednesday with total normality, as in other areas of life. However, they specify that students and teachers have also been seen who have preferred to keep the mask indoors. Catholic Schools estimates the maintenance of the mask at around 30-40%, according to Luis Centeno, deputy secretary general.

Where YES you have to continue using it: school transport and excursions

In any case, there are some educational spaces where the mask should continue to be used. The national norm says that the face mask will continue to be mandatory “in air, rail or cable transport and in buses, as well as in public passenger transport”, so that on the school route and on excursions, all bus occupants must continue to carry it.

In La Rioja, the Ministry of Education recalls the mandatory use of masks in school transport and recommends its responsible use in certain cases such as: in people with respiratory symptoms; in vulnerable population; when there is an interpersonal distance of less than 1.5 meters; or at events with a large influx of people in closed and/or poorly ventilated spaces. In addition, it is recommended that workers in educational centers maintain their use.

Teachers and students in the Region of Murcia must also wear a mask inside educational centers if they have symptoms compatible with the coronavirus, as well as during the 10 days after the detection of the positive case, according to the information note sent to schools. by the General Directorate of Human Resources, Educational Planning and Evaluation, attached to the Ministry of Education.

In Castilla y León, the responsible use of the mask in closed spaces is recommended when there are vulnerable people and the safety distance of 1.5 meters cannot be maintained. Likewise, people over 6 years of age will be obliged to use it on school transport. The same has been dictated in Castilla-La Mancha, where masks will not be mandatory in schools but will be in school transport.

The Ministry of Education and Sports of Andalusia has sent instructions to educational centers on Wednesday afternoon that indicate that “it will only be compulsory in collective school transport from 6 years, and recommended from 3 to 5 years”.

And in Cantabria, the Ministry of Education and FP indicates that they will be compulsory in school transport for children over 6 years of age and recommended for Early Childhood Education students.

Some regions are still waiting to analyze the Royal Decree to proceed to give their instructions regarding the measure, but in any case the end of the obligation to wear a mask inside closed spaces has come into force this Wednesday, after the publication in the BOE of the Royal Decree that includes this measure.

First day without mandatory use of a mask in Spain

Source: HuffPost Spain for Athena2 by

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