Updated: Aug 27, 2021
Several people, including children, gathered across from the Meade County Board of Education this morning to protest the mask mandate in Kentucky schools.
According to the event's Facebook page, their purpose is to raise "awareness for parents that want masks to be used at their discretion, NOT the Board's."
"Let them know that the parents of Meade County are not happy with the way the Board members have been handling situations including but not limited to mandatory masks in school," the description continued.
People held signs saying "Our Right, Our Freedom, Our Choice!!! Unmask Our Children" and "I do not co-parent with the Board".
Two children held signs saying "I will not wear your fear" and "Fear cannot take away our freedom".
Bridgette Smith, who organized the event, says that she believes it should be up to the parents whether or not their children wear masks. She said that she pulled her 11-year-old child out of school to be home schooled as soon as the regulations were announced.
Smith says that the mask mandate creates a lot of problems in the classroom. She said that some students are having to repeat grades because of disciplinary actions regarding masks.
Meade County Schools Superintendent Mark Martin says that no Meade County students have had to repeat grades because of disciplinary actions regarding masks.
One parent at the event said that her daughter had an allergic reaction to a mask provided to her at school. Another parent said that one of their children were paralyzed by the required vaccines, and their mission was to stress that not everything approved by the FDA is safe. They feared that the mask mandate was a slippery slope to a vaccine mandate.
Smith says that she and others plan to attend the Board of Education meeting on Sept. 14 to voice their concerns.
"I would really love to have my son back in school," she said, hopeful that a resolution could be found.
Martin says that the decision is completely out of the Board's hands as the mandate came from the Kentucky Board of Education. He said that, although operating during COVID-19 is a challenge for the District, they've not had any significant problems with students wearing masks as required.