Broward Schools superintendent offers insight ahead of OCPS mask mandate

To know whether masks work, Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Vickie Cartwright says all you have to do is look at the numbers. 

"For us, we’re seeing a difference and that makes a difference for all of our students. The only difference has been the mask," said Dr. Cartwright.

Broward County Public Schools has had a mask mandate in place since the beginning of the school year. So far they’ve only had 183 student cases of COVID-19. 

In Orange, with no mandate, the latest dashboard data shows there were 233 student cases Thursday alone and 2,775 cases total since the start of the year. Broward has 60,000 more students than Orange County Public Schools (OCPS). 

OCPS’s mask mandate goes into effect Monday. 

There is one piece of advice Dr. Cartwright has for Orange County. 

"Best thing to do is go ahead and build your dashboard, build your database now." 

Keeping track of data is crucial as the battle between districts and the governor continues. Though she said the board’s move to invoke a mask mandate had nothing to do with the governor. 

"It has everything to do with we need to make decisions based on our local conditions and what is happening in our communities." 

She said she’s sure the same goes for OCPS. 

"They’re not following us. ‘Oh Broward did it, so we’re going to do it too.’ They’re doing this because they care about their communities just like we care about our communities."

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