NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The New Mexico Public Education Department is changing its COVID-19 protocols for schools with cases to try and keep schools open. Until Thursday, PED required schools to close if they had four or more rapid responses in a 14 day period.

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A rapid response is considered one or more COVID cases reported in a 24 hours period. Many argued the system was unfair. PED says instead of forced closures, they will now work with schools to implement enhanced COVID-safe practices. They say their top priority is keeping kids in schools as much as possible.

Starting Friday, everyone is required to wear a mask on campus while indoors.