A Florida appeals court has sided with Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, upholding his ban on school mask mandates while challenges are played out in lower courts. The ruling reverses a previous decision that had halted the ban. On Friday, the Education Department said it is looking into whether the Florida mask mandate ban was violating the rights of students with disabilities who are more vulnerable to severe infection from COVID-19. Similar investigations are underway in other states.
Meanwhile, in Texas, Attorney General Ken Paxton said Friday he’s suing at least six school districts that defied Governor Greg Abbott’s order banning mask mandates at public schools.
Here in New York City, around 1 million students are returning to school for in-person classes today for the first time in 18 months.
As Pfizer-BioNTech is expected to seek approval soon for their COVID-19 vaccine for children 5 and older, new research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows unvaccinated people are 11 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than vaccinated people and more than 10 times more likely to be hospitalized.