Boulder County Mask Mandate Drop

On Monday, February 14, 2022, the Boulder County health officials voted unanimously to take the mask mandate away at 5 pm on Friday, February 18, 2022. Masks will no longer be required in indoor spaces or schools, including early childhood centers for kids under 5. On February 25th, 2022, Denver’s mask mandate for schools and child care centers will expire. The Boulder County officials decided to drop the mask mandate because of the rapidly dropping COVID-19 cases, and the high vaccination rates at 70%. The seven day positive rate dropped from 13% last week to 10% this week. Members of the public expressed the mental health toll that masks have had on children during the pandemic, which was one of the reasons for the strong desire to take away the mask mandate. Public health officials said that Colorado should get a relative break from COVID, with so many people vaccinated and the amount of natural immunity going up. 

We interviewed some teachers and students about their opinion on the mask mandate ending:


How do you feel about Boulder County lifting the mask mandate?


I don’t think the mandate should have been lifted so soon, I think the county should have waited at least 4 more weeks to see if the number of covid cases and hospitalizations would keep going down and stay down. 

I think that there has been a lot of inconsistencies in the way the pandemic has been handled as far as the mask mandate and other requirements. I think it’s time for our bodies to get back to being exposed to the germs that are a part of life so we can continue to build strong immunities to all sorts of viruses. I’m looking forward to seeing smiles that aren’t just eyeballs!


I feel that this wasn’t a good idea, I think that we should have all kept our masks on at the beginning of the pandemic and it would have all finished by now. I think that cases will spike again and perhaps even cause us to go online again. While I do understand that people are tired of the restrictions, they are necessary to keep us all safe.


Very confused. Cases have actually been spiking quite a bit with Omicron so it doesn’t really make sense for them to lift the mandate.


How do you feel about Flagstaff’s decision with the mask mandate? 


I think we as a school should have waited a few weeks to see what happened when they lifted the mandate everywhere else, and kept wearing masks for a few more weeks just to be safe. And then we could be sure that it would be a safe decision. But I think the combination of people who will keep wearing their masks and the increasing number of student vaccinations will help keep people at Flagstaff safe.


Flagstaff is complying with the county decision so it isn’t really their decision to make.


I support the decision overall.


Same answer as stated above.


Do you think that the Omicron variant cases will spike with no mask mandate?


Yes, I think there will be some spikes in cases. Not sure which variant of the coronavirus people will be infected with, but there will be more cases.


We could possibly see a surge, although I think that there will be improvements and a declining trend overall as the weather gets warmer.


I believe that Omicron cases will spike without the mask mandate, but because of vaccinations the symptoms will be dampened, therefore less hospitalizations.


I think they will, which is what I’m most scared about.


Are you going to wear a mask indoors? 










How do you feel about wearing / not wearing a mask indoors?


Boulder County’s letter explaining the lifting of the mask mandate made it clear that they suggest people keep wearing masks inside when they’re surrounded by other people, it’s just not mandatory anymore. So I think we should keep wearing them, but the people who didn’t want to wear masks were already not wearing them properly anyways.


At this point I feel comfortable not wearing a mask indoors, but will adjust if needed.


I personally am very set on wearing a mask, and I don’t want to push my opinion on others, but I have a high-risk family. I believe that it is in the best interest of my family that I wear a mask as much as possible. While I disagree with removing our masks, I still respect others’ opinions.


To be honest, not wearing a mask indoors scares me a lot. It might just be an overreaction since it’s been a while since I wasn’t afraid to not wear a mask.


Do you think that it was a good idea to lift the mask mandate?

No. I don’t think it was a good idea. Months ago, Boulder County said we should be below 50 cases a day for at least 21 days to lift the mandate, and we have not been below 50 cases per day for even 1 day yet.


Time will tell, but overall yes.


I understand that others are getting sick of COVID restrictions, and I think that it is a perfectly reasonable decision if we are safe with it. This means getting vaccinated and making sure that we limit exposure to sick people.


In my opinion it wasn’t but obviously I’m not a health expert so I don’t know what’s best for the county as a whole.


What impact do you think the lifted mask mandate will have on the COVID-19 cases?


The cases will go up, and people might end up back in the hospital.


We may see some spikes before an overall decline, but I think we’ve seen the biggest surge already.


While I do think that this new rule will cause cases to rise, I also think that it will provide some much-needed optimism for everyone.


They’ll probably continue to spike and get worse like they do every time they try loosening restrictions.


What do you think about the possibility of a new spike of COVID-19 cases because of lifted mask mandates?


If we had kept the mask mandate in place for a few more weeks, cases might have continued to go back down. But I guess now we’ll never know.


I think that it is very likely.


I’m pretty disappointed and scared because I’ve been looking forward to traveling again and the spike in COVID could change my plans. As well as this, I have high risk family members that this could affect.


How did your class react?


My class was very supportive of one another regardless of personal choices and the character ed lessons were really helpful in supporting the conversation in a positive manner.


With ease. We shared our feelings and discussed our differences and how we can help others feel comfortable.


My class feels relieved but nervous too. 


Do you think that the kids in your class will be good about not judging/excluding/bullying kids who do or do not wear masks?


Yes, I do. 


It’s what we talked about and encouraged but with everything, we can only hope.


Yes, so far, I’ve seen good responses/results in this area.