MIAMI (WSVN) - Due to an increase in coronavirus cases, changes will be implemented at Miami-Dade County Public Schools after winter break.

“We are forced to do what we’ve done for a long period of time, which is embrace protective protocols,” said Superintendent Alberto Carvalho.

Carvalho announced on Thursday morning that starting Jan. 3, masks will be mandatory for all adults entering M-DCPS facilities.

“All adults entering Miami-Dade County Public Schools facilities shall be wearing masks,” said Carvalho. “Masks will be mandatory for all adults in Miami-Dade County Public Schools facilities. The same will be true for those individuals who work on school buses.”

The mask requirement will be implemented until further notice.

“I think it’s fair to say that we are continuing to experience a significant health crisis in our community and across the country,” Carvalho said.

Carvalho mentioned the district hopes students will wear masks voluntarily.

“We are strongly encouraging students, all students at all grade levels, to wear masks at all times,” he said.

The reinforcement of masks comes as the country sees thousands of new COVID-19 hospitalizations among children.

“I don’t think the masks are a big impact on the school environment,” said Natalia, a parent.

“I think they should have it. It’s very important to protect them,” said Jenny, a parent.

Carvalho said the district is exploring legal means to fight state legislation regarding mask wearing among students.

“Considering the escalating nature of this viral crisis that we continue to experience,” said Carvalho, “what are the steps for mitigating strategies that the commissioner and/or the governor are recommending for school districts across the state? What type of assistance are they willing to land to our school systems?”

The district will be proactive in testing school employees this weekend before they head back to school campuses next week.

A note is also expected to be sent out to parents regarding possible bus driver shortages.

Broward County will hold an emergency meeting Friday, to talk about the new protocols.

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