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MANDATORY MASKING: Palm Beach County School Board Meets Today

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Parents Continue To Urge School District To Mandate Masks In Elementary, Middle Schools. Survey: More Support Mandate Than Oppose.

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BY: STAFF REPORT | BocaNewsNow.com

BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Copyright © 2021 MetroDesk Media, LLC) — Whether students in the Palm Beach County School District will be required to wear masks when the school year starts in just weeks may be clearer by the end of the day.

The Palm Beach County School Board is set for its regular meeting at 5 p.m.

While the official policy is to start the year with an “optional” mask policy, there is growing concern over the surging COVID-19 rates again plaguing the community. With elementary and many middle school students too young to receive the vaccine, parents are pushing for “optional” to be returned to “mandatory” when the school year starts.

While certainly not all, the vast majority of respondents to a BocaNewsNow.com survey are calling on the school board to require masking in at least elementary and middle school buildings. The results are the polar opposite of other surveys conducting during the previous school years, when the most vocal groups were those opposed to masks.

Among the latest responses:

“Let’s stay with mask ON WHILE in class & cafeteria ( unless you are eating) . And 3 feet apart in class. Stop blaming the governor/government when our ELECTED SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS & the superintendent (the board chooses) made the decision concerning mask.”

“If vaccines were optional we’d still have outbreaks of polio and smallpox. Covid is mutating and cannot be addressed herd immunity.”

“Yes, the schools should keep masking and all covid requirements. We are not out of this yet.”

“As a Health educator, I tell you that masking children, particularly here in Florida, is cruel and dangerous.”

“Both CDC and American Academy of Pediatrics have now made clear masks should be work in elementary schools at start of school year – we need to keep our young children safe until they can be vaccinated!”

“As a teacher in PBC abs the grandmother of two children under 5, I feel masks need to be mandatory for all elementary students come August. This Delta variant spreads it is affecting more children and they are ending up in the hospitalized. Let’s listen to the experts such as the pediatricians that recommend all unvaccinated children need to be masked at school before it’s too late!”

“I am scared that masks are not mandatory for Palm Beach County. My boy is not vaccinated yet and he will at an elementary school. I am afraid with the rising numbers of Delta cases he can get sick. At least Palm Beach County should give the option to start online until everyone is vaccinated.”

“What really gets me is the nonchalant “masks are optional.” Why not “masks are highly recommended?” East Asia, Japan and Korea are proof of how much masks prevent the spread of virus. Are the masks harmful in any way?–it’s just a piece of cloth.. until there are 3,000lbs of politics attached to it. We are considering keeping our kids out of school for the first 2 weeks out of protest. We don’t fear the virus, our children are very healthy. However, there is a non-zero risk and it would be irresponsible for us to not pay attention and do what we can, especially if we have the means (to continue to care for them at home during a work day, etc.)The virus is not a hoax.”

“I strongly believe masks should be mandatory. As an ICU nurse dealing with COVID -19 and the effects on families of all ages, it is imperative that we keep children and staff safe. Not only for them but to stop the spread of this deadly virus.”

“our children younger than the permitted age to get vaccinated remain extremely vulnerable especially with the increase in COVID-19/Delta variant cases. Mandating mask-wearing certainly prevented the spread in the 2020-2021 school year and should resume this coming school year especially with the current rate of infections! As parents of young children, this is extremely concerning and we fear the outcome if the current plan doesn’t change soon. It doesn’t make any sense to not require masks especially if the goal is to keep everyone healthy!”

“Please keep the masks optional in place for 2021-2022 school year! Please do not change it.”

“Masks should be optional only when school returns. Do NOT make it mandatory. There is a large gathering of people ready to homeschool if this occurs.”

“n light of rising covid numbers due to the delta variant and recent CDC and AAP recommendations the PBCSD has no choice but reinstate a mask mandate for the 2021-22 school year. An mask option policy is useless given what we know about how this airborne, respiratory virus is transmitted. The primary utility of the mask is to contain viral particles that are released by a covid positive (and possibly asymptomatic) student. The fake studies stating that mask wearing results in increased carbon dioxide intake have been retracted. Mask requirements have protected our kids since they returned to school last September. ”

While a specific mask policy is not on the agenda, school board member Dr. Debra Robinson — a medical doctor — has called for discussion of the reopening plan. School starts for students on August 10th.

What do you think about masks for students as the 2021-2022 school year begins? Use this form.

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