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As mask mandate expires in CA, Cal Poly keeps requirement in place

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Posted at 1:46 PM, Feb 16, 2022

Following a statement from the governor that California's indoor masking requirement would end for the vaccinated on Wednesday, Feb. 16, counties on the Central Coast soon announced that they would follow suit.

Cal Poly, located in San Luis Obispo County, has opted to keep an indoor masking rule in place for now.

University president Jeffrey D. Armstrong shared the update in an email to the campus community on Tuesday, making it clear that masks would still be required indoors across campus, regardless of vaccination status.

A few exceptions are in place: masks can be removed while eating or drinking, showering or in a private room or office when the door is closed.

Cal Poly students we spoke with shared their thoughts on the mandate remaining in place.

"I think we're on the path and around the bend [to] getting the mask mandate dropped here as well," Ryan Ruhany, a Cal Poly Student, told KSBY. "So hopefully we'll see that."

"I think it's interesting because everyone is required to be vaccinated, so I don't necessarily think we should be required to wear masks, but it really doesn't make a big difference to me," freshman Carter Thibault said.

At Cal Poly, 96.6% of residential students and 93.6% of non-residential students are fully vaccinated. 92.2% of faculty and staff are fully vaccinated.

There were 38 active COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, the lowest number since the start of winter quarter on Jan. 3, campus officials reported. Seven students are currently in isolation.

"Every metric that we track suggests that we are on the downslope of the omicron surge," Armstrong wrote in his letter to the campus community. "At some point in the very near future, it will be time to make changes to our campus protocols."

Armstrong says the university is in communication with local public health experts to jointly decide when it will be safe to lift the masking rule.

He said that the university will update the campus on their decision-making process in a week, on Wednesday, Feb. 23.