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Mask or no mask? Local parents weigh in.

Who knew a little piece of fabric would cause so much controversy in local schools?

MADISON, Ala. — We are only a couple days away until the first day of school and mask policies for some schools have made some parents uncomfortable.

Parents, teachers, and student are gearing up to go back to school. WZDX News asked parents at Big Spring Park in downtown Huntsville how hey feel about masks in schools.

Kyla Graves is a parent in Huntsville and she says her daughter will be in the 6th grade this school year at a Huntsville City Schools campus. She says "Mask mandate in school is very important to me because she is, as of right now, she is unable to get vaccinated. I fear for her safety at school."

Even though Huntsville City Schools have made masks mandatory for students, Graves says she's still nervous for her daughter., that, "Kids don't care about wearing masks. they do not keep them on." 

Madison City Schools decided to make masks optional for students. One parent, Andy McCloy says he's going to follow guidelines. "I'm not nervous. You know, we live a pretty healthy lifestyle, and we follow recommendations from the public."   

Many districts will be taking precautionary measures like monitoring temperatures and sanitizing group spaces. Some are concerned that it wont be enough. Kyla Graves says it's on the adults to keep the kids safe. "The teachers and the principal and the school superintendents themselves need to put forth more effort in making sure that the kids are separated and wearing their masks as they should."

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Who knew a little piece of fabric could cause so much controversy?

It's been a hot topic of conversation for more than a year, and it hasn't cooled down. 

As of July 30, both Madison County Schools and Madison City Schools have decided that masks will be optional for students at the start of the 2021-2022 school year.

Tim Hall of Madison County Schools says they will continue to monitor data and work closely with the Alabama Department of Public Health, but some parents say this is not enough. He adds, "We have readied the classrooms, we've readied the building, we're telling the students to get set for a great school year, and now let's move forward."

Pamelia Jackson, a PTA member, says she just wants the best for kids and teachers. "The decision has already been decided by the Centers for Disease Control and the American Academy of Pediatrics. So, there's really not a decision to be made. Just follow the guidelines."

And some parents who don't agree with the decision will keep their kids home. Jackson says, "Some of my friends are going to do the virtual option that's not within the school system. Some are going to home school."

Jennifer Coe wants the school board, teachers, parents and students to take it slow. "I would prefer they err on the side of caution."

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