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Hopkinton High School Is First To Get State Approval To Drop Mask Mandate

HOPKINTON (CBS) – Hopkinton High School is the first school in Massachusetts to get approval from the state to drop the mask mandate for anyone who's vaccinated.

But all students and staff at the high school are still being told to wear their masks for now.

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) told WBZ-TV Hopkinton High requested approval on October 1 to lift the mask requirement and was given permission on Thursday, October 7.

"Effective now, vaccinated individuals in the Hopkinton High School are not currently subject to DESE's mask requirement, although they may still choose to wear a mask," DESE said in a statement Tuesday.

That's because at least 80-percent of all students and staff at the school have been vaccinated, which is the state's threshold for removing the masks, under a revised policy announced September 27. Those who are not vaccinated are still expected to wear masks.

The change has not been implemented yet at the high school. Hours after it got permission, Hopkinton's School Committee decided to hold off on a vote to officially rescind the mask requirement until at least Thursday, October 21, which is when the committee will meet again.

"The Superintendent and the School Committee are taking a cautious, informed approach in order to mitigate risk and to be prepared for the logistics of unmasking, if that does end up being the decision for Hopkinton," Superintendent Carol Cavanaugh said in a statement Tuesday.

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