Wisconsin pediatricians urge schools to mandate mask-wearing in class

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MADISON, Ill. (WTVO) — Hundreds of pediatricians are urging Wisconsin schools to impose a mask mandate similar to that in Illinois.

Nearly 500 Wisconsin doctors recently signed an open letter to parents and schools urging the use of masks and other mitigation steps.

Health officials say masking, vaccinations and social distancing are the best methods to keep students safe as schools begin the 2021-2022 school year.

Right now, Wisconsin does not have a mask mandate for students and staff, regardless of vaccination status, like the executive order imposed upon Illinois by Gov. JB Pritzker.

UW Health’s Department of Pediatrics chairperson, Dr. Ellen Wald, says not having those safety measures in place puts children at risk of catching COVID-19.

“Which means you have to test them and then means you have to quarantine them until you have the results of those tests, and that means you’re going to fragment education all over again,” Wald said.

Wald hopes the letter to schools will help change minds in district boards.

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