California Mask Mandate Lifted


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An illustration of people wearing masks. Though the mask mandate may be lifted, it is still strongly recommended that people wear them.

Kai Matsumoto, Staff Writer

Earlier in February 2022, California lifted its universal indoor mask mandate for those who are fully vaccinated. It was officially announced on Mar. 1, 2022.  On Feb. 28, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced schools will not be required to wear masks by Mar. 11, 2022. However, he “strongly recommend[s]” wearing them.

“California continues to adjust our policies based on the latest data and science, applying what we’ve learned over the past two years to guide our response to the pandemic,” Newsom explained in a statement. “Masks are an effective tool to minimize the spread of the virus and future variants, especially when transmission rates are high. We cannot predict the future of the virus, but we are better prepared for it and will continue to take measures rooted in science to keep California moving forward.”

When asked about how he feels about dropping the mask mandate, eighth-grader Pierce Donoghue responds, “As a student, I definitely feel it’s more back to normal, and I think it’s just going to be a lot easier and more enjoyable actually seeing people’s faces.

History teacher Ms. Miller also comments, “It seems like an appropriate time to remove the mask mandates for the majority of people. I believe it’s important that we pay attention to the numbers and continue to adjust the precautions as the numbers rise or as the numbers fall. Being inside of a classroom is unique because there are a lot of people in a small space, and we all have lots of germs, so I feel like it’s been the correct decision to keep us masked up!”

With Covid cases constantly rising and falling, eighth-grader Jason Khan explains, “I mean [the Covid cases will probably rise]. There have been breakthrough infections with Omicron so it is highly likely the Covid cases would increase in schools.”

Miller adds, “As long as the virus continues to minimize, I believe we will be fine. But again, I believe in following the numbers. If we get a spike in the numbers, I’m in favor of returning to masks. Wearing a mask is so easy and an easy way to support each other.”

According to statistics from the Centers for Disease and Control (CDC), Covid cases have decreased since the recent Omicron surge, with the weekly average dropping from approximately 8,000 to 200 in a month.

I’ll keep wearing a mask. It makes me feel safe,” Khan declares.

Donoghue also opinionates, “I don’t really like it and it just makes my faces really hot all the time.  I have also been vaccinated so I have a little bit of natural immunity as well.”

Though we may all have our own opinions, we can all agree that as long as everyone stays safe during this time, the future will be looking bright.