But Teachers Contacting BocaNewsNow.com Suggest Individuals May No-Show Until Masking Is Required.
Record Infections, Positivity Rates Continue In Florida, Palm Beach County.
21,683 Florida Infections Friday, Positivity Rate Jumps To 18.82 Percent In Palm Beach County.
BY: ANDREW COLTON | Editor and Publisher
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Copyright © 2021 MetroDesk Media, LLC) — Teachers contacting BocaNewsNow.com over the past several days have suggested a mass walkout — or sickout — is being planned for the first days of school in Palm Beach County. The issue: teachers livid that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is banning in-school mask mandates, potentially creating a dangerous situation for teachers, staffers and students.
But Justin Katz, President of the Palm Beach County Classroom Teachers Association, told BocaNewsNow.com Saturday night that there is no organized job action being considered.
”No,” said Katz, “Nothing remotely close to that is being considered officially by anyone.”
Teachers speaking to BocaNewsNow.com say the CTA needs to do something to express outrage at the Governor’s executive order prohibiting mask mandates. The tension is growing as Palm Beach County’s positivity rate passed 18 percent on Friday with the largest one day total of new COVID-19 cases in Florida since the pandemic began. Infection and positivity rates are higher than they were when school was delayed a year ago due to COVID-19.
“DeSantis tried to buy our support,” said a Boca Raton elementary school teacher. “He bragged about bonuses and higher pay, but it’s all meaningless of teachers get sick or die. He is playing politics with our lives and the lives of our students.”
The Broward County School Board last week unanimously approved a mask mandate for everyone in school buildings. That led Gov. DeSantis to issue an executive order prohibiting mask mandates in Florida schools. The Palm Beach County School Board has been notably quiet on the issue. School starts on August 10th.
But the school board’s laissez faire approach to masks is contrary to actions being taken by Palm Beach County itself, where masks are now required in all county buildings, courthouses and the clerk’s office. The Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners has authorized the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office to issue trespass citations — or effectuate arrests — to violators.
Current numbers: 21,683 new COVID-19 cases recorded on Friday in Florida. Palm Beach County Positivity Rate is 18.82 percent.
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