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Several Toronto post-secondary schools may bring back mask policies if public health guidelines change


A number of Toronto area post-secondary institutions have said they may reinstate mask policies if public health COVID-19 guidelines change.

So far, Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU), Humber College and York University have indicated their willingness to reexamine masking policies if guidances changes.

“The university may reinstate requirements for vaccinations and masks in indoor settings should public health recommendations change,” TMU told CTV News Toronto on Tuesday.

In correspondence, Humber and York said their institutions will continue to monitor the impact of COVID-19 and public health guidelines.

READ MORE: Ontario's top doctor warns of more masking recommendations ahead of 'difficult' winter

“As we have throughout the pandemic, we will continue to follow the direction of public health and may adjust our approach as things continue to evolve,” a Humber spokesperson told CTV News Toronto.

In the summer, TMU, Humber and York dropped their mask mandates following provincial guidelines lifting masking across most settings in Ontario in June.

Seneca College and OCAD University – which have both maintained mask mandates in classrooms, labs and other areas where physical distancing is not possible – said they will continue doing so until further notice.

The University of Toronto said their institution has no updates to share on their masking policy at this point in time.

News of schools preparing to change course if guidelines shift follows the city’s public health board asking Toronto’s top doctor to “urgently explore” reinstating mask mandates at schools.

Their request followed a presentation at a Tuesday meeting citing the “high” but “stable” levels of COVID-19 in the city, which appear to be slightly rising, according to data.

Last month, Ontario’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Kieran Moore said he was deliberating making a decision on provincial masking recommendations soon as a “complex and difficult winter" begins to unfold.

At this time, no new recommendations or requirements have been announced.

The University of Waterloo reinstated its masking requirement on Tuesday for indoor academic instruction. Starting on Wednesday, masks will be required at lectures, seminars, labs, tests and exams.

The university said their decision was made due to data trends pointing to increased levels of COVID-19 with the goal of avoiding academic disruption. Top Stories

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