Frequently Asked Questions:
School and Childcare Mask Mandates

Does the Public Health Order require face coverings in private schools?

Yes, all schools and childcare facilities in the City and County of Denver are covered by this order.

Are face coverings required in home-based childcare facilities?

All people ages 2 and older in licensed childcare facilities in the City and County of Denver are required to wear face coverings indoors.

Where are face coverings required under the new Public Health Order?

Face coverings are required to be worn at all times indoors at schools and childcare facilities. Under the order, face coverings are not required to be worn outdoors at these facilities, though each school may implement additional outdoor masking requirements at their discretion.

How will the Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE) enforce this policy?

The goal is education to get compliance. Similar to other public health orders in Denver, DDPHE will conduct proactive compliance checks and respond to complaints. Violations of the public health order are subject to an administrative fine as well as criminal charges that allow for up to 300 days in jail.

Why is Denver implementing a vaccination requirement?

While Denver’s current vaccination rate is more than 72%, cases of COVID-19 are increasing in our community including cases of the highly contagious Delta variant. More of our residents need to be vaccinated to stop the spread of the virus before fall and winter months, when respiratory illnesses traditionally increase. Vaccination is the best way to stop the spread of COVID-19 and bolster our economic recovery. 

Is anyone exempt from this mandate?

  • People who are deaf, hard of hearing, or otherwise living with a disability where fully observing facial expressions is essential to communication, including speech therapy.
  • Individuals who must temporarily remove a face covering for identification purposes.
  • Individuals who are actively engaged in a public safety role, such as law enforcement, firefighters or emergency medical personnel.

Will parents / volunteers be required to wear face coverings when entering school/childcare property?

Yes, in order to provide the highest level of protection, everyone ages 2 and up must wear a face covering when indoors at schools and childcare facilities, regardless of vaccination status.

What if my child is vaccinated?

Everyone ages 2 and up must wear a face covering when indoors at schools and childcare facilities, regardless of vaccination status.

Do exemptions exist for philosophical or religious reasons?

No, there are not exemptions to the face covering requirement for religious or philosophical reasons.

Can face covering be removed when eating and drinking?

Face coverings may be removed when seated during meal and snack time and while actively eating and drinking.

Is it safe for children as young as 2 to wear a face covering?

Yes, according to the CDC, it is safe for children 2 years and older to wear a face covering. The current Denver Public Health Order requires face coverings be removed during naps and that nap mats be placed at least six-feet apart.

Do face coverings need to be worn at recess or during pick-up and drop-off?

Per the Public Health Order, face coverings are only required indoors at schools and childcare facilities, however each school or facility may implement additional policies that may require face covering outdoors.

Do face coverings need to be worn during indoor sports activities at schools and childcare facilities?

Yes, unless covered under a Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA)  exemption or under the school sports guidance.

Learn more about sports activities on our "School Sports Guidance" page.