The Great Falls Public Schools (GFPS) music department is requiring all wind instruments this semester to have cloth coverings to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
GFPS needs enough coverings for every wind instrument in the district by September 7 so that music programs in Great Falls can continue to play in person. Students and teachers are calling the effort "Operation Bell Covers." The coverings can be made from cotton fabric or from old t-shirts, and the district is still looking for volunteers who can help sew.
The district made the decision in the spring, after a study showed how COVID-19 can spread through aerosol particles in instruments.
James Mepham, band director at Great Falls High School, said despite the challenges of holding in-person classes this semester, he and his students will do whatever it takes to keep making music.
"Making music online is not anywhere near as fun as doing it in person, but we just have to make sure we're careful about staying safe," he said.
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