Masks may prevent the spread of covid, but do not prevent the spread of opinions.


Mask Protestors on campus.

Story by Ava Conn, Messenger Staff Writer

    As we approach two years into the pandemic, the debate over masks in schools continues to spike controversy from parents and students alike.

    While there is a huge divide amongst parents and students on the issue of mask-wearing, recently a group of parents has voiced their opinions on Placer High School’s campus.

    A group of parents began protesting the mask mandate in schools all the way back on Monday, December 6th, 2021. Their intention is to share their opinions with students and to encourage students to protest along with them with their slogan, “See My Smile”. Despite school protocols, these parents have instructed students to not wear their masks and if asked to comply simply say, “No thank you”. 

    When speaking to a parent advocating for no masks at school at a PUHSD Board Meeting, she shared where she stands on the issue. Tavia Ladd, a parent of three, expressed, “My student is going to do what they’re going to do and I’m going to support their decision, and that’s why I think there shouldn’t be a mandate that it should be a choice.”

    With the future of Covid still unknown and new variants still on the rise, many parents and staff are still adamant about mask usage in schools.

    Freshman, Emma Villanueva, shared her thoughts, “I think if you just look at the science behind it, it’s obvious that masks are at least doing something and I think that if we just wear our masks it would prevent the spread.”

    Students and staff with health risks or family members who are put at risk by Covid have also shown support to masks at school. 

    Trenton Deacon, a math teacher at Placer High, shared, “Having family members that have had health issues like that I think it’s really important that we should follow what the guidelines are,” after being asked how he felt about mask-wearing at school.

    Gus Murphy, who is a former educator from the Lincoln school district, shared his opposing opinion “I’m against the mandating of it. I am happy to let any child or any adult, staff (credentialed or qualified) wear a mask if it makes them feel safe. It is their right to wear a mask just like it’s their right to take a vaccine.” He went on to say  “What I’m against fundamentally is telling someone else to put a mask over their face without knowing their medical history, both physical and mental. 

    Parents and staff who are in agreement with Murphy feel that it should not be up to the state to decide whether or not a student should have to wear a mask. However, many people still feel that as a public school it is required by law to do as the state advises.

    “Regardless of whether you think you should be wearing one or not, you know whatever side of the fence you’re on, we have to do what the state tells us because we are a public school.” Deacon said.

    Two years into this pandemic and it is still unknown for how long this debate will continue.