The federal states of Berlin and Bavaria lifted the mask requirement in schools from Monday.
In Berlin it is no longer necessary to wear a mask up to the sixth grade, in Bavaria it is no longer necessary to wear it in class.
The abolition of the obligation has been discussed intensively for days. Some representatives of medical associations considered the general retention of the measure in schools to be inappropriate, while some virology experts consider the new measures, which make the use of the mask more flexible, to be inappropriate.
Critics of this measure argue that the rules of social distancing are not applicable in the classroom, that many people are not vaccinated due to their age and that the number of infections is high, especially among young people. According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the coronavirus is particularly widespread among children and adolescents of preschool age.
Federal Minister of Education Anja Karliczek speaks favorably of the end of the mask requirement in schools, a measure that has been in force in Saarland since Friday and is being investigated in Baden-Württemberg and Saxony.
“Wearing a mask disrupts normal lessons and is stressful for the students,” the minister said this Monday in the “Rheinische Post”. “However, if the mask requirement is relaxed, the tests in schools should be continued or even increased,” he clarified, especially with a view to the time after the European autumn break.
“Because then experience has shown that it is very possible that the number of infections will rise again. Prevention in schools also remains important to protect children and adolescents, ”he added.
In the last few days, the number of new infections with the coronavirus has risen again. According to the RKI, the seven-day incidence has risen to 64.7 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 24 hours, compared with 61.7 a week ago.