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Fort Atkinson School District implements mask mandate

(Caroline County Public Schools via NBC12)
Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 10:21 PM CDT
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FORT ATKINSON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Fort Atkinson School Board has voted in favor of implementing a mask mandate in its schools for all students following the death of a middle school student whose mother said died after contracting COVID-19.

The board voted in favor of, with one member opposed, to require masks in all indoor spaces where children are present through Oct. 26. The only exception to the mandate is when an individual is eating or drinking.

The more than three hour meeting consisted of multiple parents and board members speaking passionately about the issue.

Some parents cried as they demanded a mask mandate, saying their children now fear dying from the virus after losing a classmate.

“Every time I drop my daughter off at school, I pray she doesn’t see the fear in my eyes from having the thought of having to leave her where I don’t feel she is safe,” said one parent. “With no mask mandate in place and so far so very few safety mitigations and organized contact tracing, I feel not enough is being done by our district to keep children healthy and safe.”

“Your job as a school board is to guide us in education, guide our children with the best education we can give them here in our small community,” said another parent. “It is not to tell everybody to wear a mask or not.”

The mandate will be reevaluated at the board’s meeting on Oct. 26.

Mandating masks is a controversial issue that has been politicized in school districts across the country. Until now, wearing a mask was optional in the Fort Atkinson district.

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