Union County parents upset over school mask mandate

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MORGANFIELD, Ky. (WEHT) – Mask mandates continue to be a hot topic in schools. The Union County school board announced on August 13 that face coverings will be required when school starts on September 1. This comes after reviewing the rising COVID cases since they made masks optional in July.

Superintendent Patricia Sheffer had a presentation about the changes to their opening plan. In the slideshow, she showed the difference between Kentucky’s COVID cases over the summer. Despite the increase in cases, many parents are continuing to try to get the school board to make face masks optional again.

“I understand your intention is to do what is best for our kids. But hear me when I say we elected you to represent us as parents and to do what is best for our kids regarding their education, not to prescribe medical interventions. Medical decisions are our job,” said Jason Beshear, a Morganfield parent.

Some parents expressed their concerns over the cleanliness of face coverings. Jennifer Nalley of Morganfield said, “wearing these dirty, wet masks have been proven to do more harm than good.”

A grandmother from Morganfield spoke about her findings in a lab study of masks worn for just one day. “They found pneumonia, TB, meningitis, E-coli, Lymes disease, diphtheria… but nothing that would cause COVID,” she said.

Morgan Fields got emotional as she said that her son has had troubles learning in class because masks block the teachers’ faces. “A child who has speech and hearing problems, like my son, relies heavily on facial expressions – notably the mouth. By covering the mouth a child with a learning disability has to try that much harder to remain equal with their peers,” said Fields.

Superintendent Sheffer said in her report that this is the first time anyone has gone through a pandemic, so they are doing their best for the safety of everyone. The board did not vote further regarding masks.

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