SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A majority (60%) of parents who responded to a Sioux Falls School survey said their student plans to wear a face covering regularly to school if students return to Sioux Falls School District buildings this fall.
Most staff members (81%) said they also planned to wear face coverings inside the school.
Parents were asked to respond to two specific phrases on face coverings, DeeAnn Konrad, the district’s community relations supervisor, said on Tuesday
When asked about the important role face coverings play in the mitigation of COVID-19 and in keeping district schools opening, 51% of parents who responded said requiring face coverings best described their view.
The second phrase was face coverings should be strongly recommended, according to Konrad. Of those who responded, 48% said that best described their view.
The survey exhibit was included in Monday’s school board agenda listed the results for the two categories which were face coverings required and face coverings strongly recommended. The results for no response were also listed as 1.7% who did not respond.
Respondents were clearly more in favor of sending their children back to the school buildings this fall. The survey said 71% planned to send their children back to the physical building. Only 6.13% said they did not plan to send children back to school.
A portion of parents, 22.8% were unsure if their child will return to school.
Parents who are not sure if they will send their children back to school wanted more information on the district’s virtual academy, the survey said. Twenty-nine percent of the parents said they were considering the virtual academy.
Parents who were not sure if they will send their children back to school also wanted information on safety protocols. Respondents also indicated that the level of COVID-19 cases on the community will also influence their decision.
Although parents wanted more information about the virtual academy, some parents have already decided to use the virtual academy.
Eight percent of the parents said they were planning to send their children to the virtual academy.
While a majority of parents (60%) said their student plans to regularly wear a face covering, the 35% who said the student may not wear one because it’s personal choice. The survey said 3.25% of respondents said a child may not wear a mask for medical reasons.
The Sioux Falls School District had at least 24,000 students in the fall of 2019.
Most school district staff (84%) who responded to the survey said they plan to return to work without accommodation. A majority of staff members (81%) said they have a face covering and plan to wear it regularly.
More than 90% of staff said a face covering should be required or strongly recommended with 63% wanting a requirement and 36% supporting a strong recommendation.
The district has about 3,400 staff members. As of July 22, the district had received 2,530 staff responses.