Parents clash over masks in schools ahead of Brevard school board meeting

The Brevard County School Board met Tuesday evening to discuss policy on masks in schools. 

District leaders announced Friday that parents could exercise an opt-out clause allowing their children the choice to not wear a mask.  This decision came after data released late last week showed new COVID-19 cases were dropping across the county. 

Parents in Brevard County will still be able to opt their students out of wearing masks in school. The school board voted in favor of that Tuesday night.

An argument broke out between two sides outside the school board building after the meeting began.

Inside, some parents asked the board for the mask mandate to expire.

"Teachers have enough junk going on. They don’t need to be dealing with masks, mask discipline, discipline problems because of masks," one woman said.

Others asked the board to not let up now.

"Please reinstate the mask policy with no opt-outs until the pandemic is under better control and our children have at least the opportunity to be immunized," one man said.

Parents on both sides agreed on one thing: people should be voicing their opinions in a respectful manner. 

"I am definitely ok with any of the safeguards that are put into place to protect against the hate speech and the horrible things we are seeing," Julie Shannon said."I always stand for civility. I think that’s the basis of our nation, which is civility and civil discourse," Paul Hart said.

The board also voted to approve changes to the public comment section of the meetings. It will limit the time and number of comments at each meeting.

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