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VIDEO: Pea Ridge school mask mandate rejected

by Annette Beard | September 13, 2021 at 5:43 p.m.
TIMES photograph by Annette Beard..Anthony Cooper spoke to the Pea Ridge School Board Monday in opposition to the mask mandate. One of his daughters held a sign stating "We Kids Stand Against Masks.”

Three of five School Board members voted against the recommendation to continue the mask mandate imposed Sept. 1 during the regularly scheduled meeting Monday, Sept. 13.

Carrying signs stating “My Child, My Choice,” “We kids stand against masks,” and “Please don’t make kids wear masks” children and about 40 parents stood in front of the Pea Ridge School Administration building waiting for the School Board meeting during which board members considered a recommendation from superintendent Keith Martin to continue the mask mandate implemented at a special meeting Sept. 1.

Martin shared data showing that the numbers of students and staff quarantined from covid contact had dramatically reduced since the mandate.

[DON'T SEE THE VIDEO ABOVE, CLICK HERE: nwaonline.com/914maskprotest/]

Five people present spoke in favor of requiring masks and five spoke in opposition, as allowed by guidelines presented by Martin.

Following the vote, Martin emphasized that parents should keep children home if they are showing any symptoms.

“I can’t tell you how important it is to keep your children home if they’re symptomatic … without the barrier of masks,” Martin said. “I highly encourage you to wear a mask. If symptomatic, please stay home instead of coming to school and imposing others.”

See next week’s TIMES for the full report.

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