Redwood Valley Middle School will be going to a kindergarten through eighth grade mask mandate starting Thursday.

It all began several weeks ago with a spike in reported COVID cases in the sixth grade. The numbers were reported to the Minnesota Department of Health, which recommended additional mitigations in the middle school. Superintendent Becky Cselovszki told KLGR that school staff thought masking sixth graders would be the least restrictive mitigation for the middle school as a whole.

On Sept. 21, there were 43 reported positive cases in the Redwood Area School District from pre-K through 12th grade, and including staff. This past Monday evening, the school board reviewed the numbers again. While the numbers were lower, Czelovski told KLGR:

With the middle school still officially in what the Department of Health would consider an outbreak situation, the school board decided to increase the middle school’s mitigations:

Cselovszki said that because high school numbers remain low, there are no formal limitations on high school students at this time.