Cooper end North Carolina's statewide mask mandate

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina health officials and Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper announced they will eliminate the statewide mask mandate and ease masking requirements in schools.

The new recommendations released on Wednesday urge K-8 schools to require masks for students and staff while they are indoors but allows fully vaccinated high school students and staff to be unmasked.

The mask mandate expires at 5 p.m. on July 30.

That’s the same time the updated school reopening guidance takes effect.

The easing of masking restrictions comes as the state is seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations fueled by the delta variant.

Feature photo: Gov. Roy Cooper gives a COVID-19 update at a news conference on Wednesday, July 21. Screenshot photo.

Copyright 2021, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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