Palm Beach County Teachers Say They Can’t Punish Kids Who Don’t Wear Masks, But Can Reward Those Who Do. Homework Passes… Games… Rewards…Extra Credit…
BY: ANDREW COLTON | Editor and Publisher
UPDATED At 11AM, Thursday, August 5th, 2021 With Comment From School District.
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Copyright © 2021 MetroDesk Media, LLC) — As the Palm Beach County School Board affirms that it can’t mandate student masks due to an executive order by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, several teachers tell BocaNewsNow.com that they have other options in their teaching toolkits.
”We can incentivize students to do the right thing,” said an elementary school teacher in Boca Raton. “If we can’t order them to wear masks, we can certainly give awards an rewards to students who do.”
Homework passes, small gifts from grab bags, independent assignments and even parties for kids who comply are all options teachers say they can utilize to push children to wear masks.
”Even if we can’t tell our students that they have to wear masks,” said a South Palm Beach County Middle School teacher, “we can make it clear to students who don’t that they’re missing out on activities, rewards and fun that other students get to take part in.”
Palm Beach County Classroom Teacher Association President Justin Katz told BocaNewsNow.com over the weekend that no job action is planned by teachers who largely want masks mandated.
There is no suggestion that the CTA has encouraged individual teachers to craft an incentive system
The Palm Beach County School District, commenting after this article first appeared, told us that the District itself isn’t incentivizing mask use.
“We never encouraged incentivizing students,” said Spokeswoman Claudia Shea, “but we strongly encourage mask use.”
Teachers say even if their union is quiet, they don’t have to be.
”Never underestimate the power of a teacher to get through to a young child or even a teenager to make a point,” said a West Boca Raton teacher. “We’ll reward kids who wear masks. The power of a certificate, the power of a day without homework, the power of extra credit truly is power. Even if we can’t tell students that they have to wear a mask, there is nothing stopping us from rewarding those who do.”
School starts August 10th in the Palm Beach County School District.
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