The updated guidance was issued amid rising cases of the Delta variant of Covid-19 in parts of the country with low vaccination rates.
There were 110,477 cases reported over the seven-day period ending July 29, with the week prior reporting 73,000 and the two previous weeks tallying 45,000 cases and 23,000 cases, respectively.
What does the order mean?
It adds that this was done “to protect parents’ freedom to choose whether their children wear masks.”
The order states that if the State Board of Education finds a school district board unwilling or unable to comply, it is able to withhold the transfer of state funds, discretionary grant funds or discretionary lottery funds.
The board can also declare a school ineligible for competitive grants if the district doesn’t comply.
The Miami-Dade County Public Schools superintendent said he’s worried about striking a balance between protecting his district and following the governor’s order.
“We certainly hope to be able to craft protocols that ensure full funding of our children’s education, while simultaneously protecting their and their teachers’ health and well-being,” Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho said.
Katherine Koch, the district’s chief communication’s officer, now says, “The School Board of Broward County is reviewing Governor DeSantis’ Executive Order and considering what adjustments may be necessary to make to our face covering policy.”
In Central Florida, the use of face masks at Orange County Public Schools will continue through Monday, according to Sara Au, the district’s spokesperson.
A school board policy “authorizes the Superintendent to implement more restrictive face covering requirements in the event the CDC or other government entities issue such guidance,” and the district is waiting on guidance from local and state leadership on how to move forward, Au said.
CNN’s Deanna Hackney and Brandon Miller contributed to this report.