APPLETON WIS. (WBAY). Students in the Appleton Area Schools District will continue to practice mandatory masking for at minimum six more weeks.
After hearing from parents on both sides, the Appleton School Board voted 6-1 in favor of keeping the current policy in place.
Monday evening saw parents from both sides of the issue gather. The masking supporters were in the district offices, while the requesters for optional masking met at Freedom Project Academy in Grand Chute to address the school board members via a Zoom link.
“The message that we really want to send is, you need to open your board meetings. We are not domestic terrorists, we are here to gather in a peaceful assembly and show them we can be a part of a board meeting, that’s what representative government is all about,” said parent Sheri Hartzeim.
“This is a hard time to be in a leadership position and be navigating all of this and I applaud the administration for following the science and the data,”Emily Tseffos, a parent.
Currently, the district’s COVID-19 dashboard shows the number of positive cases among students at 41, which is 28% of the total enrollment.
The District’s expectations for in-person learning include masks faceAll students, EC-12, district staff, and all visitors are covered while indoors in district facilities as well as on district transport. However, the district’s website says masks/faceOutdoors, you have the option of covering yourself with a cover.
Although it may seem low, the district claims that community spread is still high among health officials. Less than 60% of those vaccinated have been completed.
So far, the district hasn’t had to close any schools, but some of the surrounding districts have.
“I believe we have been successful, as having this as one of our layered mitigation practices. :33 For one thing as evidenced by the fact that we only had to have one classroom in our entire district have a time period when they’ve been fully virtual for a very short amount of time and that has not been the case by other districts in our area,”Judy Basement, Superintendent of Appleton Area Schools District.
Dey Truyman, however, was the only member who voted against the masking requirement.
The school board will revisit the policy on November 22 to determine if there are any changes in the health front.
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