After initial court ruling, City of San Antonio pushes new mask mandates for schools, city facilities

BEXAR COUNTY (KTSA News) — The City of San Antonio and San Antonio Metro Health announced two new mask mandates Tuesday evening just hours after a state judge temporarily allowed the city and Bexar County to ignore Governor Greg Abbott’s executive order banning such mandates.

The first mask mandate, announced by San Antonio Metro Health, requires everyone in public schools in Bexar County — regardless of grade level or purpose in the building — to wear a mask.  That health directive was made effective immediately.

Metro Health also said schools “shall notify the student’s parents or guardians when the school learns that a student was in close contact, as defined by the CDC, with a COVID-19 positive individual on campus or during a school-related event.”

“The pandemic has shown us the importance of in-person learning, but with the highly contagious delta variant now widespread in San Antonio, schools need every tool at their disposal to stay open safely. Those tools include universal masking,” said San Antonio Metro Health’s Dr. Junda Woo. “We must protect those who are still not eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, which includes all children under age 12, and the unvaccinated members of their households.”

The second mask mandate, announced by San Antonio city manager Erik Walsh, requires masks to be worn by staff and visitors to city facilities.  That requirement takes effect Wednesday.