Click below to read the executive order:
Covid-19 Back-to-school Guidance
The Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 is more transmissible, and we are seeing younger people becoming seriously ill. Protection from the vaccine is still excellent, although breakthrough infections are occurring. It is very unlikely that a vaccinated person will require hospital admission, but they could be infected and spread the virus to others. For this reason, we need to continue with other layers of protection (masking, distancing) in and outside of schools, even for vaccinated individuals. This virus poses an ongoing risk to our communities. This guidance will be modified based on the level of community transmission with restrictions lessened if transmission becomes lower over time. Our partners at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center have put together back-to-school recommendations that you will find here.
The recent action by Governor Lee ending his declaration of a state-wide public health emergency, as well as the decision of the Shelby County Health Department to lift its own mask mandate, indicate that masking is no longer legally mandated. The City does not have stand-alone authority to mandate masks as a response to Covid-19. Beginning May 15, 2021, the City of Memphis will no longer enforce our mask ordinance.
City government will continue to follow CDC guidelines, which currently recommends that people indoors continue to wear a mask unless they are in their own homes around family who have been vaccinated. People entering City of Memphis facilities, with exception of our parks and other outdoor spaces, will still be required to wear a mask.
Private businesses and churches may continue to require their patrons and employees to wear masks. We strongly encourage everyone to continue masking up when in public, at least until we reach our goal of vaccinating 70% of the Shelby County population.