I wanted to share my recent comment at my son’s school board meeting tonight.
I took out any self-identifying information to protect my son’s privacy.
Since the district did not include all my comments in their minutes from last month, I figured I may as well document what I said here this time around.
Like a ripple in water, all it takes is one person to make great change.
I pray this helps give my son the best birthday present I could think of- an unmasked school.
Thank you for taking steps to repair the hallway cameras at [redacted], even though my request for in-room cameras was denied.
I have yet to hear about my requests from you all for cameras in my son’s classroom, as well as the removal of the seclusion room, AKA Calm Room, at [redacted] Elementary.
However, the elephant in the room remains the forced masking of children and staff.
Furthermore, masking special needs children and their teachers discriminates against their right to a free and appropriate education.
My son is nonverbal and requires lip reading and facial expressions not only to understand what is said but also to understand the world around him.
Many Autistics and neurodivergents process the world differently than their typical peers, leading to specific accommodations in IEPs.
I am grateful to my son’s team for volunteering to remove their masks when speaking to my son.
However, the district is failing the rest of our students by force-masking them, as well as their teachers.
It’s time to move to mask optional.
Why are you continuing to mask children when it’s not only detrimental to their social development, but also their natural development which occurred in the pre-mask school environment?
Have you ever stopped to think about what kind of student and world you are helping to create with the continued force masking of children and their teachers?
I have heard from teachers that they like children masked, as it keeps them quiet.
Are you continuing to mask children for “health,” or is there another reason?
District [redacted] received [redacted] Million in ESSER funds through the CARES Act.
Where did that all money go?
Is it tied to why you continue to mask our children despite the fact that children all over the nation attend school without masks without mass outbreaks of COVID-19?
District parents deserve answers.
Teachers, students, and parents deserve the CHOICE on whether to mask or not.
Lastly, you all took an oath of conduct as a member of the board of education of [redacted].
In it, you affirm that “As part of the Board of Education, I shall accept the responsibility for my role in the equitable and quality education of every student in the School District.”
If you seek to adhere to your oath about providing an equitable education for all, moving to mask-optional is the only way forward.