State education board votes against mask requirement in schools

The state Board of Education voted on Thursday against requiring Oklahoma public schools to wear masks. Instead, voting 4-3 to highly recommend the face cloths to be used in schools.

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 State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister, who cast one of the three no votes, says she was disappointed by the state board.

“(The) vote is very disappointing and one that likely will stoke more concerns for teachers, parents and families with a new school year only weeks away. We all realize how important it is for schools to reopen. But we are in the midst of a global pandemic with COVID-19 cases sharply rising in our state. I believe it entirely appropriate that the State Board establish a floor of recommended and required protocols to ensure a safer environment for all in the school community – teachers, staff and students.”

Related article: Guthrie Public Schools unveils proposed back-to-school plan

The mask requirement was part of school safety protocols that the board was considering.

“Now that the board has made its decision, we strongly urge districts across the state to do the right thing and demonstrate the ‘Oklahoma Standard’ by masking up and following social distancing guidelines,” Hofmeister said. “In the meantime, the Oklahoma State Department of Education will continue working to secure the PPE our schools need.” 

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4 Comments on "State education board votes against mask requirement in schools"

  1. The state Board of Education voted on Thursday against requiring Oklahoma public schools to wear masks. Instead, voting 4-3 to highly recommend the face cloths to be used in schools.

    Joy Hofmeister isn’t happy… but who cares! IT’S A WIN FOR THE KIDS!…

  2. Calvin Ellis | July 24, 2020 at 9:20 pm | Reply

    I think we will see a big spike when school starts kids riding school buses and so forth school should be delayed for a while longer.

  3. I’m so thankful that I don’t have kids young enough to be in school. I’m ready for this Covid stuff to be over!

  4. If you want this to be over soon, as do we all, then you should think long and hard about your vote this November. We cannot count on a vaccine to fix this. Meanwhile, the US is so far below other countries in handling this virus that it’s a crying shame—literally.

    Watch this and see how other countries have fared when they have a strong and wise leader and a strategy for the whole country. One tidbit from the video: Viet Nam, a country of some 90 million plus has had no deaths from this virus. Other countries, more socialistic than we are, have subsidized their citizens’ wages and saved their jobs and their economies. Their people are not hungry, They are not being evicted from their homes. They don’t have to worry about zillion-dollar medical bills from this virus or any other health problems. They have all the tests and PPE they need. Their schools have resumed. They almost have their lives back.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/27/opinion/covid-19-global-response.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage

    And then there’s the US, a global leader alright, but in all the wrong areas.

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