Roughly three weeks after the Williamson County Schools Board of Education approved a mask mandate for all students, board members will vote on whether to extend the requirement.

During the Sept. 16 WCS board work session, the board discussed the mandate, which is slated to expire Sept. 21 if it is not extended.

According to Superintendent Jason Golden, staff is likely to recommend approving a mask mandate extension, citing a decline in cases since the mandates were approved. On Sept. 14, WCS reported that 270 students and 87 staff members had been identified with a positive coronavirus case. That number is down from the 426 students and 105 staff members that had a positive case as of Aug. 31, when the mask mandate for all students went into effect.

"Based on the trends, I think the wise thing to do right now is to continue what we've been doing these last few weeks," Golden said.

The item will be voted on during the school board's regular meeting Sept. 20.

The district will still allow students to opt out per Gov. Bill Lee's executive order. According to data released Sept. 10 by WCS, just under 32% of students have opted out of the requirement.

However, that order is slated to expire at 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 5. Golden said after that time, he would expect the governor to reevaluate whether the executive order would be extended.

The district has not yet determined how long an extended mask mandate would last.