#CNWTalkUp: Should Broward Students Be Required to Wear Masks?

broward school students
Children arrive, Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2021, for the first day of school at Washington Elementary School in Riviera Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

There is currently an ongoing battle between the state and Broward County Public Schools over whether or not students should be required to wear masks to school.

The school board voted last week to keep its mask mandate for students, despite Florida Governor Ron DeSantis banning public school districts from doing so. DeSantis has been adamant that it should be up to parents to decide whether or not children should wear masks.

Florida’s Education Board voted this week to punish Broward County for its mask mandate, as students returned to school, following the district’s policy. With the battle ongoing, we asked Broward residents if they think students should be required to wear masks.

Dr. Dominique Jackson: As a parent and an educator, I feel that the mask mandate should be up to the parents discretion. As a parent, I know what is best for my child his allergies and his asthma and certain things that pertain to him personally that I know that having a mask on for eight hours a day is not conducive for his personal health so this is why I feel like it should be up to the discretion of the parent. Being that my youngest son is under the age of 12 and he can’t be vaccinated, I would want the people around him to have a mask on because of his asthma and allergies. However he can’t personally wear a mask the entire day so it makes it difficult for him. They are some parents who feel like corona is everywhere and their kid needs to have on their mask and they should have that ability or right. However the parents who have kids with underlying medical issues such as my son I feel like I should be given the option to decide if I want my child to wear a mask or not for his personal health.

Shania Bailey: I strongly feel as though there should be a mask mandate when I comes to students wearing mask in school because as an educator, I would hate for there to be another shutdown. We now have to bridge a two year learning gap caused by the pandemic. Our students are suffering tremendously academically due to the online learning curve that took place last year. Also, the school board is only offering five free days off then it dips into our sick time if you have it…if not then you’re out of luck!

Lauren Ellington: I understand that students don’t always wear their masks appropriately and parents are concerned with hygiene – primarily in the elementary sector. However, I feel that having students wear masks will help to reduce the spread of covid – even if it is by a small percentage.

Brenda James: I don’t think that student should have a mask mandate. I think it should be up to the parents to decide whether they want their kids to attend school with the mask or not but I do believe that teachers have to take it responsibility for themselves and make a decision about whether they want to protect themselves. Let the parents dictate what the students do and teachers dictate what they do, that’s my opinion.

Patricia Jackson: I feel like students do need to wear their mask, not just for the safety of the staff but also for their safety. Covid has not gone away so we want to make sure that kids come to us each and every day. We have a lot of work to do and a lot of catching up to do and so with that being said I would like for my students to be here in person with their mask on so that they are safe I am safe and they are healthy and well.

 

Roshel Bailey: I think a mask mandate should be in place. Lots of parents are saying no because the mask is uncomfortable and they aren’t thinking about the big picture. If there’s a spike in the schools, the kids will miss out so its the right thing to do.

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