Parents are calling for an end to masks in Bismarck Public Schools.
At this week’s Bismarck Public School Board meeting, community members asked to unmask children as they expressed various concerns.
“In an effort to try and restore some of the well-being and joy that has been robbed from them throughout the last year the social, emotional and cognitive delays and damages are alarming,” said Kay Roth.
Parents spoke about their children being bullied for not wanting to wear a mask.
They’re also upset that teachers who told their kids they need to be better mask wearers weren’t leading by example.
“Now I’m sorry, I do not send my kids to school to learn how to wear a mask. It’s for educational purposes only. Right? That’s why we send our kids to school. Second of all, this teacher did not have a mask on. My youngest tells me, ‘Mom it’s not fair. The teachers aren’t wearing masks, why do I?'” said Amanda Davis.
And staff aren’t the only ones under fire for not wearing a mask, as one parent brought up a Facebook post where Superintendent Dr. Jason Hornbacher didn’t have one on while visiting a classroom.
“The reason I point this out is because by your own guidelines on BPS Schools, there’s a graphic that shows if one person is not masked and test positive, but the others in the group are masked everyone will still have to quarantine. So in other words, if Dr. Hornbacher tests positive, that entire group of kids would have to quarantine and he would have to isolate,” said Nancy Jackson.
Some parents also say it should be their decision to make when it comes to masking due to medical concerns surrounding their child.
We reached out to the school district for a statement regarding the concerns parents had, but we did not receive one before news time.
In the latest dashboard update, BPS reports 80 people have tested positive in the school system and there have been more than 15,000 close contacts identified.