Huntsville City Schools parents protest over mask mandate

Published: Aug. 3, 2021 at 11:53 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Huntsville City Schools was the first school district to mandate masks for the upcoming school year in the Tennessee Valley. But, the decision brought those out to a school board meeting who are dead set against it.

Many protestors shouted, “My child, my choice.” In response, Huntsville City Schools responded and are giving parents a choice.

“A lot of you have said, we want a choice. Well, you have that choice. Huntsville Virtual Academy has been opened back up until Monday morning at 8 a.m.,” said school board member Ryan Renaud.

Many crowded into tonight’s school board meeting expecting to let board members know exactly how they feel however, only two people were able to speak due to meeting rules and policies.

Parent of 2, Adam Stevens says it wasn’t fair.

“Our tax dollars pay for that building, Our tax dollars pay for their salaries of everybody that works in that building. For them to sit inside there and hide behind the armed guards and not let any of us in to come in and voice our input, their constituents, to tell them what we want, what we desire, when we pay their salaries, to me is an embarrassment,” says Stevens.

Superintendent Christie Finley says the best interest of all parties involved come first.

“At the end of the day, we are all passionate about education. Parents are the biggest advocates, for their children and I completely understand that. But, at the end of the day as a steward of this district we have to make decisions that are in the best interest of our students and our staff,” says Finley.

The district will not be contact tracing and is not requiring quarantine for close contacts.

“The other change or other difference between everyone’s memory from last year and ADPH guidelines has to do with contact tracing. That expansive contract tracing is not part of HCS procedure,” says Huntsville City Schools Attorney, Chris Pape.

You can find the district’s full list of COVID policies here.

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