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St. Landry school leaders vote to keep temporary mask mandate for students and faculty

Posted at 9:29 PM, Jan 06, 2022

As the omicron variant continues to surge in Louisiana, some schools are taking precautions.

In some cases, students are switching to remote learning, and one school district is taking a stance on masks.

By a 9-2 vote, the St. Landry Parish School Board voted to keep the temporary mask mandate in place for students and staff.

A decision that came with some debate.

"They put a mask on her as soon as I dropped her off and took it off of her before I picked her up; I guess with the assumption that she wasn't going to tell me. I should be able to trust that when I send my daughter to school what I'm being told when she's enrolled is what's going to apply,” one parent argued.

"When I go to school, I don't eat breakfast, I don't eat lunch at all and that's because I'm so scared to catch COVID. I never caught it yet because I always have my mask on. I care about my staff and my friends catching it,” said Opelousas High School student, Joanna Aggison.

One school board member who voted no on the mandate said teachers have had enough.

"I've got teachers that are ready to walk out because they have to keep wearing a mask. If it's optional it's one thing, but mandating is another thing,” said SLPSB District 8 member, Kyle Boss.

Others hope it's for the greater good.

"If this is an opportunity or something that will help keep our kids in school, I'm for doing it on a temporary basis until the positivity goes down,” said SLPSB District 6 member, Donnie Perron.

Right now, the parish is seeing a 10% positivity rate.

Once that rate drops to 5%, the board will reconsider the mandate.

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