Highline College Face Mask Protocol
Are face masks required on campus?
No. Face masks are not required on campus but encouraged in crowded spaces indoors.
We continue to closely monitor the King County COVID-19 Dashboards and follow the guidance provided by the Washington Department of Health for Higher Education and the Public Health of Seattle-King County.
The COVID Community Level dashboard guides safety protocols on campus and takes into account not only transmission levels, but new COVID-19 admissions and percent of inpatient beds occupied by COVID patients. As of September, 2022 we are in the low (green) level. If we enter the high (red) level face masks may be required inside buildings on campus. At this level we will have reached a critical point where implementing the face mask requirement inside buildings will best protect our campus and community.
Some individuals may choose to continue wearing a face mask or may need to wear a face mask because they or a member of their household is high risk for severe COVID-19 disease. Individuals who are immunocompromised, medically fragile and/or otherwise high risk for severe disease should consult their health care provider about whether or not to continue wearing well-fitted face masks.
While face masks are no longer required in buildings on the campus, there may be situations when the use of well-fitting masks may be temporarily required for individuals by the WA DOH and/or King County Public Health. Examples of these situations are:
1. When an individual has tested positive for COVID-19 and is returning to campus on days 6-10, a face mask is required inside all buildings.
2. When there is a cluster and/or outbreak in an area on campus the WA DOH or King County Public Health may require a group of individuals to wear face masks for a period of time. In some cases, the WA DOH or King County may require face masks worn universally on campus for a period of time.
3. If COVID-19 levels increase to red zone/high level and have an upward trend, face masks may be required universally on campus.
4. If King County Public Health, the Washington Department of Health or the Washington Governor require face masks.
The college supports students, employees, visitors, volunteers, and vendors who choose to wear a face mask and those who do not. It is up to the individual to decide.
Who should consider continuing to wear a face mask?
Everyone should evaluate if continuing to wear a face mask is the best decision for themselves. With the availability of well-fitted face masks each individual now has the ability to provide a much higher level of protection than a cloth face mask. Additional information on ways to protect yourself with a well-fitted/higher-level face mask and ensure your mask fits properly is found at: Masks and Respirators (cdc.gov) and Improve How Your Mask Protects You | CDC