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VERIFY: Answering your CMS questions as students head back to school

CMS students head back to class Wednesday morning. The district has been gearing up for this year, facing the pandemic once again and the uncertainty of COVID-19.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students head back to class Wednesday, and once again, the district is gearing up for a year of uncertainty due to the pandemic and surging delta variant.

For over a month, WCNC Charlotte's VERIFY team has been getting questions from parents about CMS returning to school and how they'll handle COVID-19. 

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THE QUESTION

Does CMS require masks in schools?

THE ANSWER

Yes, CMS is one of the North Carolina school districts that is requiring masks. The district said it will review the mask requirement quarterly or if the metrics start to get better.

THE QUESTION

Are vaccines required for teachers at CMS? 

THE ANSWER

No, teachers at CMS are not required to get vaccinated

CMS said they do not mandate teachers or staff to get vaccines and the district does not collect personal health information about who has or has not chosen to get vaccinated. 

THE  QUESTION

Will there be social distancing and contact tracing in schools? 

THE ANSWER

Yes, there will be social distancing and contact tracing in schools. 

CMS said it will follow the state's guidance and work closely with health officials when it comes to social distancing recommendations.

The StrongSchoolsNC Tool Kit states all schools should maintain a minimum of three feet between K-12 students who are not fully vaccinated and a minimum of six feet between adults and students who are not fully vaccinated. 

CMS said as of right now, social distancing is encouraged and reminders are posted throughout school buildings. 

As for contact tracing, the StrongSchoolsNC Tool Kit says districts should work with local health departments. Mecklenburg County Public Health said it will be working closely with CMS for contact tracing for any possible exposures at school. 

RELATED: VERIFY: This is how NC schools will complete COVID-19 contact tracing

School administration and educators will provide information about close contacts according to guidelines established by NCDHHS and local public health. Mecklenburg County Public Health has a COVID-19 school team comprised of nurses and case investigators who work closely with school officials to complete contact tracing.  

THE QUESTION

Will there be COVID-19 testing in CMS Schools? 

THE ANSWER

Yes, CMS will participate in one of the state-funded testing programs run through NCDHHS.

RELATED: VERIFY: These NC & SC districts will test for COVID-19 in schools

Contact Meghan Bragg at mbragg@wcnc.com and follow her on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

VERIFY is dedicated to helping the public distinguish between true and false information. The VERIFY team, with help from questions submitted by the audience, tracks the spread of stories or claims that need clarification or correction. Have something you want VERIFIED? Text us at 704-329-3600 or visit /verify.

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