New Jersey to eliminate school mask mandate for children and staff


New Jersey Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy plans to lift the state’s school mask mandate for children and staff.

Murphy is expected to make the announcement Monday during a pandemic briefing in Trenton. The warrant will officially be lifted on March 7, an official with the governor’s office confirmed to Fox News Digital on Monday morning.

Phil Murphy, the Democratic Party candidate for governor of New Jersey, and his family arrive to vote in Middletown, New Jersey, November 7, 2017.
(REUTERS/Lucas Jackson)

Murphy last renewed the school mask mandate last month by declaring a public health emergency.

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“These demands again bring us no joy, but they are the only responsible course of action at present,” he said at the time.

Murphy hinted at the end of the mask mandate for schools last week as coronavirus cases plummeted after a spike fueled by the omicron variant last year.

“I’m looking at a moment from this school year where we no longer wear masks in our schools,” Murphy said last Tuesday.

Murphy’s executive orders requiring masks to be worn by students and teachers in schools were the subject of a lawsuit last year. A U.S. district judge, however, denied a request for a preliminary injunction to block the state’s mask mandate in December, calling the school’s mask mandate “rational.”

Governor Phil Murphy votes at the Arts and Cultural Center in Long Branch, New Jersey on Saturday, October 23, 2021.

Governor Phil Murphy votes at the Arts and Cultural Center in Long Branch, New Jersey on Saturday, October 23, 2021.
(John Jones/NJ Advance Media via AP)

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Masks have also become optional for thousands of students across 140 school districts in Illinois from Monday. A state judge has issued a temporary restraining order preventing school districts from requiring masks.

The state’s attorney general filed an application for an emergency stay.


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