SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– Springfield Public Schools has announced starting January 4, wearing masks will now be optional for all students.

This announcement comes following the Missouri Attorney General issued threats to take legal action on public schools and health departments that continue to enforce mandatory masking.

“All students ages 5-18 have now had the opportunity to be fully vaccinated,” SPS said in a press release. “When students return Jan. 4, wearing masks will be optional.”

Mask wearing will still be enforced while aboard public transportation such as school buses, due to a federal mandate.

Springfield Public Schools have also updated their COVID-19 quarantine protocols to the following:

  • Students and staff exhibiting symptoms of any illness must stay home until symptoms resolve and/or they are cleared by a medical provider to return.
  • COVID-positive students will still be excluded from school and school activities for 10 days.
  • Students identified as direct contacts of a COVID-positive case will be notified but not be excluded if they are asymptomatic.
  • Daily public notifications of SPS COVID cases will end.

Further details about SPS’s 2021-2022 Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services Plan can be found here.