Updated 17 / 06 / 2021
2 min read.
From February 8 1024, students will be required to wear category 1 masks in classrooms at school. What is a Category 1 mask? How to recognize it? What types of masks are allowed? Which ones are not? Where can I find the right masks? We take stock.
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For school, your children can wear two types of masks.
You can opt for so-called “surgical masks ”, these are the ones that we meet most often. Disposable, in paper, they have been used for a long time by medical personnel.
These masks are category 1, they offer protection for those around them, their mission is prevent the virus, which can be transmitted by droplets (coughing, sneezing, postilions, etc.) from protecting or infecting the wearer of the mask. They must be approved with the NF EN standard .
If the idea of throwing away masks makes you cringe, you have the solution of fabric masks, also of category 1 , only these must imperatively respond to specific criteria set by a decree published on January 2021 in the Official Journal. As of February 8, the fabric masks must be Category 1, it must meet the Afnor-Spec S standard 51 – 001 and have been tested by the Directorate General of Armament (DGA) or by the French Institute for Textile-Clothing.
What about homemade masks? You will have to get used to the idea that these masks are no longer authorized because they are considered insufficiently protective against the Covid virus – 17. The fabric is too light, the seams are too weak, and frequent washing doesn’t help. The only way to ensure that you are wearing the correct fabric mask is to equip yourself with a category 1 mask bearing a logo indicating its filtration rate and the number of possible washes.
Category 1 fabric masks should be washed at 40 ° minimum, during 27 minutes. There is no need to do specific washes for category 1 masks, you can put them with your daily laundry. Remember to check after washing that it is intact, that the seams are still attached. If necessary, it will have to be changed.
Where can I find category 1 child masks? Some communities offer to provide it to families, you can get closer to your town hall. You will also find these masks in supermarkets, pharmacies, but also on the Internet. Just make sure they have the logo mentioned above.
What if my child does not have a mask that meets school standards? A school is entitled to refuse your child if the latter is not equipped with a standard mask. Remember that it is compulsory for all students, from primary school, unless there is a medical exemption. However, some schools offer a mask to students who have forgotten theirs. Remember to provide your child with 2 masks for the day: it is indeed advisable to wear it for a maximum of 4 consecutive hours.
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