FRANKFORT, Ky. (FOX 56) – Gov. Beshear announced he is signing an executive order that is requiring masks in all K-12 schools, child care, and pre-K.
Prior to this executive order, just 48 of Kentucky’s 171 school districts were requiring masks in schools. And many of these districts across Kentucky start on Wednesday.
Beshear says the order has the support of many education groups in Kentucky and local health departments, citing the fact that many students are not even eligible for the vaccine.
The governor showed several stats showing nearly a straight line growth in hospital rates and says ICU and ventilator admissions have doubled in the last two weeks.
The governor announced 2,500 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday, which is the most since January. He says the state is seeing an 11.05% positivity rate, and there are 1,251 hospitalizations as of Tuesday. There were also seven new deaths. These factors led to the governor’s decision on masks in schools.
As of Tuesday, 1,251 people are hospitalized for COVID-19 related reasons, 339 are in the ICU, and 168 are on ventilators.
The governor also said Kentucky is doubling hospital rates every two weeks.
“We are to the point where we cannot allow our kids to go into these buildings unprotected, unvaccinated and face this delta variant,” Gov. Beshear said. “We have already seen through what we have shown you that our kids will not stay in school, they will not get in-person learning. We will have massive quarantines, we’ll have parents that can’t go to work.”
Beshear says masks are the best way to make sure students are in school and not having to quarantine.
The mask executive order for schools runs 30 days. Beshear says he will re-evaluate after that.