Oklahoma public schools received a donation of more than 600,000 masks on Monday from an anonymous donor.
Many school districts have made the decision to return full-time to the classrooms. These masks are helping with the safety of the students, teachers, and staff.
"This was really great news; 600,000 disposable (KN95) mask that are available for any school personnel, teachers or even students for school districts to determine who needs that but we know it is a welcomed relief," state Superintendent Joy Hofmeister said.
The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security will begin distributing the mask over the next two weeks, with help from school safety officers, and a network of city, county, and tribal emergency managers.
Mark Gower, ODEMHS director, said it will be a team effort to get the mask to every public school across the state, and Hofmeister doesn’t anticipate any challenges with getting kids to wear the mask.
"You know our kids are wearing them in school. We are just amazed at how our teachers have done such a good job with students, but we know everyone is reaching COVID fatigue. So this is a reminder that while it feels like the virus is in the rearview mirror, it’s still not. There’s still more ahead that need to continue to protect all those within our communities, within our school and classroom," she said.
Hofmeister said this donation came at a great time, considering kids under 16 are not are eligible for the vaccine.