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Some Stanly Co. parents considering other school options following mask requirement for school year

Published: Aug. 4, 2021 at 5:43 PM EDT
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STANLY COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - Some Stanly County parents say masks should be optional, now they’re weighing their options on where their child goes to school.

The Stanly County Board of Education voted Tuesday to make masks a requirement for the 2021-2022 school year.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and Anson County Schools also voted for masks to be required this school year.

According to the resolution adopted by the Board, masks are required “While inside school buildings and other enclosed spaces utilized for student learning, field trips or enrichment activities, face coverings will be required for all employees and students for the 2021-22 school year until the positivity rate for Stanly County falls below 7.9% during a consecutive two week period.”

Masks are also required on school transportation.

In addition, school visitors including parents and volunteers who directly interact with students and employees are required to wear face coverings inside of the school buildings.

There are some Stanly County students and parents who disagreed with the Board’s vote and say masks should be optional.

“I’m kind of upset about it because masks, they give you rashes, they’re uncomfortable,” said elementary schools student Joshua Lucas.

“I think it should be optional. I think we should be allowed to take our own risks,” said high school student Kaelynn Guyette. “I think parents should be allowed to let their children wear masks or not wear masks. I don’t think we should be forced into doing things that we don’t particularly want to do.”

Ashlee Little has four kids in the school system and says some parents have considered alternative learning programs so they can learn without a mask requirement.

“There’s definitely buildings, churches, other buildings that parents can get together and help each other get through this difficult time, if the county decides that they’re going to force this upon us we will explore other options,” Little said.

One parent told WBTV off-camera that she feels students and staff should wear masks to lower the spread of COVID-19 and says her children will be wearing them to school, not just for their health but others too.

Little says if possible, she’s thinking of changing school districts altogether, so her kids can have a choice in wearing a mask.

“You definitely can transfer into Cabarrus County if that’s an option. I think there’s a fee associated with that but I’m willing to do whatever it is to protect my children,” Little said.

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