CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. — Jefferson County Schools will drop its school mask mandate effective February 21st.

The Jefferson County Board of Education (JCBOE) voted Monday to adopt a policy that would make masking in school optional.

The new policy goes into effect on Monday, Feb. 21, 2022.

An announcement from the school system said school staff would be observing the universal masking policy through the rest of this week, but said, “There will be no penalty for students who choose to remove their masks.”

A change in guidance from the WVDE and WVDHHR prompted board members to reconsider the original policy, which was adopted to minimize quarantine according to the school system announcement.

Complete guidance will be released on Monday when the new policy officially takes effect, according to the school system’s announcement.