Superintendent: Detroit public schools won’t reconsider mask mandate until at least mid-March

Nikolai Vitti cites lower vaccination rate in Detroit

Detroit Public Schools Community District students wearing masks in a classroom.

DETROIT – The superintendent of Detroit public schools said the district will wait until at least mid-March to consider removing its mask mandate.

Nikolai Vitti, superintendent of the Detroit Public Schools Community District, cited the city’s lower vaccination rate when explaining the decision to continue requiring masks for the time being.

“We currently agree with the Detroit Health Department that due to the city’s lower vaccination rates our mask removal date will be later than other districts,” he said in a statement.

While many districts around Metro Detroit and Michigan are removing their universal masking requirements due to updated CDC guidelines, Detroit will reconsider “between mid-March and mid-April,” Vitti said.

The district is reaching nearly 100% of students agreeing to COVID testing, he said. When that happens, and non-consenting students are transferred to virtual learning, the district will be in a better position to allow for optimal mask wearing for employees and students, according to Vitti.

“We also want to ensure that the city does not experience another surge after spring break,” he wrote. “It would be difficult to remove the mask requirement and then enforce it once again if a surge occurs near spring break, when staff and students are not in school. Once those two obstacles are cleared, we would consider lifting the mask requirement.”

Here is the superintendent’s statement, in full:

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.