This is an important message from Dr. Rabey.
The State Education Department understands that Nassau County Supreme Court has ruled that the Department of Health exceeded its authority in enacting the mask regulation. This regulation is the subject of conflicting decisions, insofar as Albany County Supreme Court recently upheld the regulation.
The Governor and State DOH have filed a Notice of Appeal and are seeking confirmation that the Court’s order is stayed. While these legal steps occur, it is the NYSED’s position that schools must continue to follow the mask rule.
Furthermore, all local orders, including Erie County’s, are still valid because they were issued under a different section of New York’s Executive Law.
As such, all prior Erie County emergency orders are still in full effect, including the emergency order issued on November 23, 2021 requiring all patrons and public facing staff in indoor Erie County public locations to wear masks. ‘Indoor public locations’ includes, but is not limited to, schools.
Therefore, Depew Schools are obligated to continue to follow the mask mandate at this time. Further information may follow in the coming days.
As always, we thank you for your continued support, cooperation and patience, as we navigate through this health crisis together.