KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Douglas County will now mandate that children ages 2 to 11 wear masks while indoors.
The announcement comes as part of an emergency order made in conjunction between the county's local health officer and the Douglas County Commission "to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus."
"The highly transmissible Delta variant of COVID-19 is now the dominant strain in Douglas County, resulting in a rapid increase in new cases and numerous outbreaks," the health order states.
The health order will apply to schools in the area, as the new school year begins. Many districts in Douglas County did not previously require masks for students.
"Children under the age of 12 are not currently eligible for vaccines, and the CDC recommends universal indoor masking for children under the age of 12, especially in in-person school settings," the order said.
The order also points to data from the CDC that indicates masking is effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19.
Recently, other schools without mask mandates have experienced high numbers of COVID-19 cases among students, including Turner and Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools.